Post-Evacuation: Accounting for Employees

The following are key steps and tips to help you account for all employees, visitors, and vendors after an evacuation has taken place:

  • Designate assembly areas, both inside and outside your workplace, where employees should gather after evacuating. Assembly locations within the building are often referred to as "areas of refuge." Make sure your assembly area has sufficient space to accommodate all of your employees. Exterior assembly areas, used when the building must be partially or completely evacuated, are typically located in parking lots or other open areas away from busy streets.
  • Take a head count after the evacuation. Identify the names and last known locations of anyone not accounted for and pass them to the official in charge. Accounting for all employees following an evacuation is critical. Confusion in the assembly areas can lead to delays in rescuing anyone trapped in the building, or unnecessary and dangerous search-and-rescue operations. When designating an assembly area, consider (and try to minimize) the possibility of employees interfering with rescue operations.
  • Establish a method for accounting for non-employees such as suppliers and customers.
  • Establish procedures for further evacuation in case the incident expands. This may consist of sending employees home by normal means or providing them with transportation to an offsite location.

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