A Colonel’s preparation guide for natural disasters


Tropical Storm Hermine’s diversion to the east came as a big relief for Louisiana residents, who were already dealing with the flooding devastation a non-named system caused less than a month ago.

Higher than normal tides in coastal areas, lack of rainfall and temperatures rising to the mid-90s are expected in Louisiana for the next few days, according to the National Weather Center.
Despite of the fact that the latest system brings minimal impact to Louisiana, hurricane season is still in effect till the end of November. For that reason it is important for students to understand university emergency procedures and policies for natural disasters.

Bellow, you will find a summary guide of Nicholls State University policies for extreme weather emergencies:

Hurricane Emergency Plan

Nicholls State University has five phases of preparedness described in its Hurricane Emergency Plan. Each phase may be implemented before, during and after a possible storm if needed.

Nicholls officials are responsible for monitoring every storm that is predicted to enter the Gulf of Mexico, access the weather conditions and initiate the appropriate preparations.

The university orients students to prepare an emergency bag, including identification documents (Colonel card, driver’s license), important papers, basic toiletries, first aid kit, clothes, a charged cellphone and money.

The complete document can be found at: http://emergency.nicholls.edu/wp-content/uploads/nicholls_hurricane_emergency_plan.pdf

Emergency Notification System

After monitoring a possible threat, the university will issue notifications to inform students about the plans and procedures that will be put in effect.

Nicholls emergency notification system includes voicemail, text messaging and e-mail. Campus information and alerts are also communicated via the university Web site and emergency call boxes.

Nicholls has a database of students and faculty members contact information that is used exclusively in emergency cases. The database includes the names, telephone numbers and campus e-mail addresses of all current Nicholls students.

To ensure the efficiency of the notification system, Nicholls orients student to keep their contact information updated on Banner at all times.

Evacuation Shelter

In case of a hurricane emergency, Nicholls may open the Donald G. Bollinger Student Union as a designated shelter area for students, faculty and staff.

Faculty and staff members will be designated to perform specific tasks to ensure the operation of the shelter. Students and faculty members taking shelter on campus are required to register and follow shelter rules and procedures.

Shelter rules can be found on page 39.

Shelter Supply List

Nicholls Hurricane Emergency Plan provides students with a list of supplies to bring to an evacuation shelter site. It includes items such as:

– 3-day supply of non-perishable food and water. Plan one gallon of water per person per day
– Manual can opener, paper towels, disposable plates, cups and utensils
– Personal hygiene items, including feminine supplies
– Clothes and bedding items, including pillows and blankets
– Flashlights and batteries

The guidelines orient students to limit their luggage to one bag and one backpack. The entire list can be found on page 40 of the document.

Guide for On-Campus Residents and Housing Emergency Procedures

Nicholls requires On-Campus residents to fill out a resident information form containing the student’s evacuation plans upon classes cancelation and university closure. The university will inform the residents about the state of the emergency, the procedures that will take place and the response expected of them.

More information can be found at the Residential Handbook at: https://www.nicholls.edu/housing/files/2007/09/2015-16-Residential-Handbook.pdf or at http://emergency.nicholls.edu/wp-content/uploads/resident-hurricane-preparedness.pdf

Continued Learning Following an Extreme Emergency
Instructors are required to have a detailed plan for continued learning when evacuation is necessary. Classes and course-related activities can resume online following emergencies such as natural disasters. In this case, students must:

– Check emergency notifications and updates at www.nicholls.edu and school email accounts
– Be familiar accessing Moodle and know their student email and password
– Contact instructors regarding their situation and/or intentions for completing the course work
– Evacuate school bags, books and other course-related materials

In the event of an emergency, housing residents and other students in need of accommodations are oriented to contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Coordinator at (985) 448-4783 or visit http://www.nicholls.edu/ada/.