Emergency & Safety Information

The employees of Western Piedmont Community College strive to provide a safe, attractive, and engaging environment for our students and visitors. As part of that commitment, we provide these tips for emergencies on campus and ways for you to stay safe.

Campus Emergencies Checklist


In case of emergency, remain calm


Campus Security can be reached at (828) 448-3500

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  • Request emergency medical services by calling 911
  • If a person is not breathing, begin CPR (if trained to do so)
  • If there is active bleeding, assist the injured in providing firm pressure while avoiding direct contact with blood or bodily fluids
  • Ask someone to contact Security at (828) 448-3500
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  • If possible, shut all windows and doors in the lowest floor of the building
  • Seek shelter away from exterior doors and windows
  • Crouch near floor or under heavy, well-supported objects and cover the back of your head
  • Do not go outside during thunder or wind storms until the storm has passed
  • Be aware of downed wires and falling objects
  • Report emergencies to security at (828) 448-3500


  • Activate the nearest fire alarm and exit the building
  • DO NOT use elevators when evacuating the building
  • Gather at designated place and do not re-enter until authorized
  • Call 911 or Security at (828) 448-3500
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(Shooter of Hostage Situation)

  • RUN: If safe to do so, move quickly away from the scene; or
  • HIDE: If not safe to move, hide as best as you can, locking or barricading doors; or
  • FIGHT: As a last resort, try to disrupt or incapacitate the shooter
  • If hiding, stay in place until the all-clear is given
  • Follow lockdown procedures located on the yellow folder on the back of all classroom doors.
  • Call 911 or Security at (828) 448-3500
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  • DO NOT touch or disturb unknown/suspicious objects
  • Be prepared to evacuate if so directed
  • Report unusual or suspicious activity to Campus Security at (828) 448-3500

Help With Emergencies


For more information on a particular emergency, select the name in the list below:

Fire Emergencies

If smoke or fire is discovered anywhere in a building or on the campus:


  • Call 911
  • If others are nearby, ask them to call Campus Security at (828) 448-3500.
  • Utilize Fire Extinguisher.
  • Move away from the area. Isolate the problem as well as possible by closing doors and windows.
  • DO NOT use elevators. DO NOT attempt to retrieve valuables.


Never attempt to fight a fire larger than wastebasket size. A small fire can generate enough smoke to cause serious injury. Never attempt to fight a fire by yourself. Call for help. Always stay between the fire and an exit.

  • If your clothes catch fire, STOP, DROP AND ROLL!


All alarms should be taken seriously. If you hear an alarm, evacuate the building immediately. Each classroom and office suite has a floor plan beside the door that indicates in red the primary exit route and staging area. The secondary routes and staging area are in blue. The blue dot indicates location of fire extinguishers and the green dot indicates location of fire pull stations. The staging areas are listed below:

  • Breeden HallGrassy Commons South Side
  • C Building (North Side)Grass Area
  • C Building (South Side)Grassy Commons
  • Carr HallParking Lot
  • D BuildingGrass Area North Side
  • E BuildingGrass Area East Side & Grassy Commons Area
  • F BuildingGrass Area North Side
  • FHEC (at Zaxby’s)South Side Parking Lot
  • FHEC (North Side)Parking Lot
  • H BuildingGrass Area East Side & Grassy Commons Area
  • Hildebrand HallCommons Area & Grassy Area South Side of Moore Hall
  • J BuildingGrass Area North Side
  • Jim Burnett HallGrass Area Above Parking Lot #2
  • LRC (Southwest Side)Grass Area
  • LRC (West Side)Parking Lot
  • Moore Hall (East Side)Flagpole
  • Moore Hall (South Side)Grass Area
  • Patton HallHandicapped Parking Area & Grassy Commons Area
  • Richardson Complex (Lower)Parking Lot B & C
  • Richardson Complex (Upper)Parking Lot A & B


If you need general locations of buildings, consult the online campus map.

Severe Weather

Conditions such as freezing rain, snow, tornadoes, hurricane strength winds, etc. may cause hazardous and possibly life-threatening conditions. In the event of severe weather, announcements will be made via the campus main number first at (828) 438-6000. Information can also be accessed through the college website at https://www.wpcc.edu/weather. Other methods of communication include text messages through the WPCC Messaging Service, email, and media. For severe conditions arising during school hours, students, staff and faculty are to remain in their assigned area (unless outdoors) until college administrators determine the seriousness of the conditions. Information regarding appropriate procedures for the safety, health and comfort of those remaining on campus will be delivered via email and text messages through the WPCC Messaging Service and outdoor emergency notification system if applicable.


Weather Information


Winter Storm Watch

A winter storm watch is issued when there is the potential for significant and hazardous winter weather within 48 hours. It does not mean that significant and hazardous weather will occur. It only means it is possible.


Winter Storm Warning

A winter storm warning is issued when a significant combination of hazardous winter weather is occurring or imminent.


Flash Flood Watch

A flash flood watch means conditions are favorable for flooding to develop. Heavy rains may cause flooding in certain areas.


Flash Flood Warning

A flash flood warning means conditions are issued when a flooding has been detected or spotted in the area. A Flash Flood warning is roughly for six hours or less. Observe these flash flood safety rules. They could save your life


  • Keep alert for signs of rain (thunder and lightning), both where you are, and upstream.
  • Be especially cautious at night. It’s harder to recognize the danger then.
  • Watch for rising water levels and don’t try to drive where water is over the roads. Parts of the road may already be washed out.
  • Turn Around – Don’t Drown. Never drive your vehicle into water of unknown depth. Flood waters can rise rapidly and sweep a car (and its occupants) away.
  • If you’re caught in the house by suddenly rising waters, move to the second floor and, if necessary, to the roof. Take warm clothing, a flashlight, and portable radio with you. Then wait for help…don’t try to swim to safety. Rescue teams will be looking for you.

Severe Thunderstorm Watch

A severe thunderstorm watch is issued when severe thunderstorms are possible. It generally covers a large area.


Severe Thunderstorm Warning

A severe thunderstorm warning is issued when a severe thunderstorm is occurring or expected to occur within a matter of minutes.


Tornado Watch

A tornado watch means conditions are right for a tornado to form. Keep apprised of weather conditions and be ready to take shelter.


Tornado Warning

A tornado warning means that a funnel cloud or tornado has been spotted in the area. Take shelter immediately in case a tornado approaches It is vital that all employees know that there is no such thing as a safe area in the event of a tornado.  However, there are safer areas within any building.  These are identified as follows.


Tornado Shelter Areas

Here are locations you should go if a tornado warning is issued:


  • Breeden Hall – Conference Room
  • C BuildingBreeden Hall Conference Room
  • Carr HallRoom 138
  • E BuildingRooms 10 or 12
  • F BuildingMen’s Locker Room
  • Foothills Higher Education CenterRoom 156 or Restrooms
  • H BuildingRoom 22
  • Hildebrand HallRestrooms
  • J BuildingRoom 30
  • Jim Burnett HallRoom 160
  • LRCRooms 92 or 99
  • Moore Hall Auditorium
  • Patton HallRoom 27
  • Rostan Horticulture CenterBreeden Hall Conference Room
  • Richardson ComplexRestrooms, Hallways, Room 210


If you need general locations of buildings, consult the online campus map.



Lightning strikes may occur 5 to 15 minutes from the center of storm activity.  The general rule from the National Weather Service is, “If you can hear thunder, proceed indoors”.  If outside, the following practices can provide some protection from lightning strikes:


  • Remove jewelry, coins, or other metallic objects that may attract lightning.
  • Stay away from tall objects that attract lightning, such as trees or antennas.
  • If in a hardtop vehicle, stay inside the vehicle.
  • Before lightning strikes, hair on the head stands up. Crouch or squat close to the ground,   minimizing electrical contact.  Keep feet together.
  • Treat any type of downed lines as energized, even if you think it is not an electrical line. Keep a minimum of 80 feet clearance between you and any downed line. Lightnining has caused electrical energy to travel several hundred feet through the ground.
  • Call 911 if you see any lightning damage or downed power lines.

In the event of an earthquake and/or structural failure, there will be very little, if any, warning time in which to react.  Advise everyone (all building occupants) to take the following actions:


  • If you feel the ground shake, take the following precautions immediately:
    1. DUCK – When the shaking first starts: DUCK or drop to the floor.
    2. COVER – Take COVER under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture. If there is nothing available to take cover under, crouch against an interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms. Stay away from window, hanging objects, mirrors or anything that might fall.
    3. HOLD – If seeking cover under a piece of furniture, HOLD onto it and be prepared to move with it during the quake.
  • Stay near an interior wall. Do not use the elevators.
  • During the tremors, do not attempt to exit the building. Most fatalities occur when people fail to take cover.
  • Outdoors – move to a clear area, away from trees, signs, buildings or downed electrical lines and poles.
  • When tremors have stopped, evacuate immediately. Damage to the structure is likely.
  • Follow the facility’s general evacuation plan.
  • If the building is not to be reoccupied, follow the facility directions from the Crisis Management Team onsite.
  • Do not enter a damaged building until the Director of Crisis Management gives approval to reenter the structure.
Medical Emergencies

In case of serious medical emergency, CALL 911 then:


  • If others are nearby, ask them to call Campus Security at (828) 448-3500. Have them give your location and a description of the problem.
  • Stay with the victim and follow instructions of the 911 operator.
  • Avoid contact with any visible body fluids such as blood or vomit. Report spillage of any body fluids to Campus Security at (828) 448-3500.
  • Keep the victim still, comfortable and warm.
  • Protect the victim from any disturbances.
  • Search for any emergency identification (i.e. ID bracelet).
  • Wait for emergency help to arrive. Never leave the victim alone if at all possible.
  • All staff and faculty are encouraged to attend a first aid and CPR training course.
  • Know the location of a first aid kit and instruction book and replenish the contents on a regular basis.


If a psychological crisis occurs (e.g. suicide attempt, disorientation, confusion, panic), CALL 911 then:


  • If others are nearby, ask them to call Campus Security at (828) 448-3500. Have them give your location and a description of the problem.
  • Stay with the victim unless your safety is threatened. Wait for emergency response personnel to arrive.
  • Stay calm and do not incite panic in others.
  • Be sensitive to the family and friends during the crisis.


Locations of First Aid Kits and First Aid Rooms:

  • Emergency Services Training Center
  • Laboratories and Shops
  • Maintenance Shed, Buildings and Grounds Office
  • Physical Education Offices
  • WPCC Pick-Up Truck
  • Breeden Hall
  • Carr Hall – Room 139
  • C BuildingRoom 102
  • E BuildingRoom 7, Room 103A, Room 130A, Room 112
  • Foothills Higher Education CenterInformation Desk & Workforce Development
  • H BuildingRoom 21, Room 2, Room 121, Room 122
  • Hildebrand HallAdvising Center Receptionist
  • J BuildingRoom 30, Room 35, Room 40, Room 50
  • Jim Burnett HallSecurity Office, Room 151, Room 262
  • LRCLibrary
  • M BuildingRoom 10
  • Moore HallBLET Office Room 103B, Business Office, Information Desk
  • Patton HallRoom 104, Room 10
  • Richardson ComplexLearning Center Room 210, Information Desk & Room 115A


If you need general locations of buildings, consult the online campus map.


Locations of Defibrillators

  • Emergency Services Training Center
  • Hildebrand HallFitness Room
  • Foothills Higher Education CenterInformation Desk
  • Library
  • Moore HallMail Room
  • Richardson ComplexRoom 115A (Workroom)
  • Security Office


If you need general locations of buildings, consult the online campus map.


Locations of Ambu Bags

  • Security Office & Car
  • Student Services
  • Foothills Higher Education Center
  • Maintenance Director’s Vehicle
  • Moore HallInformation Desk, Room 10 in closet by time clock with wheelchair
  • Library
  • Richardson ComplexRoom 115A (Workroom)
  • Carr HallRoom 141
  • Breeden HallRoom 100A
  • E BuildingRoom103A


If you need general locations of buildings, consult the online campus map.


Locations of Blankets

  • Carr HallRoom 141 supply closet
  • Mailroom
  • Richardson ComplexRoom 115A (Workroom)
  • Security’s Car