The Washington University Emergency Management Department incorporates programs that address the four phases of emergency management. These programs increase the university’s ability to respond to and recover from an emergency by supporting the preparedness of faculty, staff and students.

The Four Phases of Emergency Management

  • Prevention/Mitigation – refers to measures that reduce the chance of an emergency happening, or reducing the damaging effects of unavoidable emergencies.
  • Preparedness – taking steps to increase our ability to respond in the event of an emergency. Preparedness activities include training, conducting exercises and developing plans.
  • Response – occurs immediately before, during and after an incident. Response actions are aimed at saving lives and preserving property.
  • Recovery – returns the community’s systems and activities to normal. Activities may include repairing damaged buildings, cleaning up debris and restoring basic services.


The Washington University Emergency Management Department’s Mitigation Program regularly and systematically utilizes resources to lessen the impact of an emergency or disaster on campus with risks identified in the Hazard Identification Risk Assessment (HIRA).

The Mitigation Program provides technical assistance through implementation of applicable codes and ordinances, as well as tracking ongoing loss and repetitive loss from hazards. The Migration Program goals are to minimize building vulnerabilities of WashU facilities to WashU hazards, reduce hazards vulnerabilities to faculty, staff, students and visitors on WashU campuses, and to promote awareness and involvement through risk reduction activities education and outreach to the WashU community.

Technical Assistance

The Emergency Management Program, consistent with the with scope of the mitigation program, provides technical assistance for WashU community stakeholders. Resources provided below support technical assistance through internal and external links. For any other technical assistance needed, contact WashU Emergency Management at or 314-747-5092.

FEMA Mitigation Fact Sheets
FEMA Hazard Mitigation Planning Resources
Mitigation Best Practices
National Flood Insurance Program Technical Bulletins
Safe Rooms for Tornadoes and Hurricanes
FEMA Safe Room Resources
City of St. Louis Building Codes
2018 International Building Codes
2015 International Fire Code
St. Louis County Building Codes
FEMA 426 Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings (PDF)
DHS Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation Cyber Threat Mitigation Program
CDC Community Mitigation Guidelines to Prevent Pandemic Influenza
2020-25 St. Louis Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan