3.5 Emergency Preparedness and Response

Updated March 18, 2016

MIT has an Emergency Response System that follows the NIMS Protocol and responds to all emergencies and incidents on Campus. EHS has an Emergency Preparedness and Response System that is integrated into MIT’s response system and the overall structure and culture of the MIT community to respond to EHS emergencies on campus.

The EHS Office provides full-time, around-the-clock emergency response support and service to the MIT community. Emergency EHS services can be obtained by calling the EHS Office at (617) 452-3477 (2-EHSS) during business hours or by dialing 617-253-4948 or x100 off hours. The EHS emergency response system consists of a rotating weekly five person roster made up of an individual from each of the five EHS Programs: Biosafety, Environmental Management, Industrial Hygiene, Radiation Protection, and Safety Programs. One person is assigned to be the Primary contact with the others providing support as needed. Refer to the MIT EHS Response System SOP. New employees are provided training and introduced into the system when approved by their Deputy Director. Annual refresher training is provided to members of the System reviewing current and introducing new protocols and discussing response issues to identify areas for improvement.

MIT's EHS Office has developed standard procedures for responding to spills of hazardous materials. The Spill Response Procedures SOP provides guidance on how to differentiate minor spills and major spills, and defines each type of spill to clarify response procedures. Major spills or releases require immediate notification to the MIT Police or the MIT Operations Center, or both, who are then required to contact the EHS Office or the Cambridge Fire Department. The Environmental Management Program, Radiation Safety Program or Biosafety Program in the EHS Office will determine whether external reporting is necessary.