Employers' Guide to Including People with Disabilities in Emergency Evacuation Plans
I. PLAN DEVELOPMENT.
A. Identify Accommodation Needs
- Ask employees to self-identify accommodation needs for emergency evacuation and assure employees that this is voluntary and confidential.
- Complete a hazard analysis to help identify workplace hazards that may impede emergency evacuation.
- Perform sample drills to help employees identify limitations that may affect their ability to evacuate in an emergency.
- Develop a method to identify visitors with special needs.
B. Investigate Accommodation Options
- Ask employees with disabilities for their accommodation ideas.
- Consult with local fire, police, and HazMat departments.
- Explore various accommodation options for emergency evacuation.
C. Finalize the Plan
- Identify and include key personnel who will be involved in emergency evacuation.
- Conduct mock drills with key personnel.
- Commit the plan to writing.
- Make necessary modifications to the evacuation plan.
II. PLAN IMPLEMENTATION.
- Distribute a copy of the evacuation plan to all employees. (Provide alternative format.)
- Conduct practice evacuation drills.
- Integrate the evacuation plan into the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
III. PLAN MAINTENANCE.
- Develop a system for reporting new hazards and safety concerns.
- Create a procedure to identify the accommodation needs of new employees.
- Review and modify the evacuation plan after scheduled and unscheduled practice drills.
- Facilitate relationships with fire, police, and HazMat departments.
- Inspect and maintain emergency evacuation equipment.