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What To Do When

Parents & Families

Emergency Procedures

Should an emergency situation arise at the University of Denver, rest assured that we have planned for it and are prepared to respond. The most helpful thing you can do as a parent or loved one of a student is stay informed by visiting We understand that it is natural to want to call your student or Campus Safety, but doing so would severely slow our response to the situation at hand. During an emergency it is likely that phone lines and cellular towers will become jammed with traffic. Each minute we spend answering the phone is a minute that we cannot focus our attention on stabilizing the situation and ensuring the safety of everyone on campus.

Emergency Preparedness for Parents & Families

No family likes to think that their student might find his or her self in and emergency, but it can happen. The most important thing you can do for your student is help them prepare.

Please visit for in depth information on planning and preparedness. The "Get a kit, Make a plan, Be informed" model has proven successful in countless scenarios; it is recommended that you work with your student to build an emergency kit, write a family emergency plan, and monitor the University of Denver website to stay informed.

Get a Kit

Basic supplies can greatly increase your comfort and safety during an emergency. The list below is a starting point for a basic kit.

  • Water, one gallon per person per day (at least a three day supply)
  • Food, at least a three day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery powered or hand crank radio with NOAA weather functionality
  • Flashlight
  • Whistle (to signal for help)
  • First aid kit
  • Moist towelettes, trash bags, and zip ties for sanitation
  • Manual can opener
  • Cell phone chargers (solar models are preferred)
  • Warm clothes and blankets
  • Extra batteries
  • Duct tape

Make a Plan

Having a family plan will prove extremely useful during an emergency, particularly when communications systems begin to break down. As our society relies more on cell phones, we have found that the infrastructure that supports this convenient technology is incapable of handling the large numbers of calls placed immediately following a large scale emergency or disaster. Planning ahead to use an internet service, an out-of-town family contact, or other type of communication before disaster strikes will help you rest easy knowing your student is safe.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has created a very simple family plan template, which can be accessed here: Family Emergency Plan

Be Informed

Information is quite possibly the most important and hard to come by commodity during an emergency. There are some steps you can take to ensure that information will flow freely.

  • Encourage your student to register for DU Alert, the University's emergency notification system (registration can be performed on this page using the link in the upper right corner)
  • Check the University's homepage first if you need information during an emergency
  • Follow the University's Facebook and Twitter pages