The safety of the students, faculty, and staff is the highest priority when dealing with a bomb threat.
Types of Bomb Threats
- Specific threats are those that indicate a bomb has been placed somewhere within the campus and indicate the exact building or area, time of detonation, and/or reason for placement.
- Non-specific threats are threats that do not include all the information in a specific threat.
If you receive a bomb threat by telephone, the below is an outline of some steps to follow:
1. When a bomb threat is received by telephone, the person receiving the call should remain calm, concentrate on the exact wording of the message, and obtain as much information as possible.
- DO NOT hang up the phone
- DO NOT put the caller on hold
- DO NOT attempt to transfer the call
2. Pay close attention to the caller and his/her words and speech:
- Does the caller have any distinguishing voice characteristics such as an accent, high pitched, stutter, being familiar?
- Attitude of caller such as angry, calm, intoxicated?
- Is the caller angry, excited, irrational or agitated?
- Is the caller a man or woman, young, middle-aged, old?
- If you have caller ID, note the phone number of the caller.
- If possible, record the message.
3. Listen for background noises (traffic, music, radio, house noises, aircraft, PA system).
4. It is important that you document all that you know and hear. This should include filling out the Bomb Threat Checklist (shown PDF Document: here).
While written messages are usually associated with generalized threats and extortion attempts, a written warning of a specific device may occasionally be received. It should never be ignored. When a written threat is received, these instructions should be followed:
- Save the envelope or package and all enclosed materials. Once the message is determined to be a bomb threat, further handling should be avoided.
- Every possible effort must be made to retain evidence, such as handwriting or type writing, paper, postal markings, etc., which may assist in tracing the threat and identifying the writer.
After receiving a bomb threat of any kind, immediately contact the Police at 410-516-4600 or 911.