Emergency Situations


Please take a few moments to read this emergency information all the way to the end. The knowledge you gain might save your life or the lives of your colleagues. Please note that there is basic safety information posted in studios, darkrooms, shops and labs by the front door for future reference.


For a medical, criminal, or fire emergency, please dial “100” from any MIT telephone. If you need to call from a cell phone, it is best to dial “617‐253‐1212” (MIT Police). Please program this number into your cell phone. This will insure a faster response than dialing “911”.


Fires can also be reported by pulling a red alarm station. (These are typically located at exit stairwell entrances.) In the event of a fire, please sound the alarm by phone or pull box, turn off any heat producing equipment, close the door to the space where the fire is occurring, and then evacuate the area.


PLEASE do NOT attempt to fight a fire yourself unless you have had special training. Please familiarize yourself with exit pathways and alarm locations. Assume every instance of the fire alarm sounding is a real emergency and evacuate immediately. Anyone with mobility impairments (whether temporary or long term) should identify themselves to ACT Staff and Jim Harrington so we can make provision to assist you should the need arise in the future.


In the event of the need to place a physical barrier between ourselves and an exterior physical hazard (such as contaminated air), a “shelter‐in‐place” emergency will be declared. At such times, the fresh air ventilation of our buildings will be shut down, and exterior doors will be secured. Building users should proceed to the places listed below which were chosen for their limited exposure to the exterior. Please familiarize yourself with these locations. The primary places for use as shelter‐in‐place in ACT are:

  • E15‐001 (The “Cube”) 200 persons;
  • E14‐151 (Mars Lab) 180 Persons; and
  • The alternative location for ACT is E15‐070 (Bartos Theater) 200 persons.


One of the single most important steps that you can take for insuring your personal safety at MIT in case of emergency is to be sure that MIT has your cell phone number and a non‐MIT e‐mail address accurately recorded with your personal information. The Institute will use these as part of the MIT Alert system, which can send out global voice, text and e‐mail messages. Your most immediate warning of an emergency affecting the campus will most likely come from your portable phone. Please go to: http://em2.mit.edu/mitalert/ and click on the appropriate link to enter or verify your cell phone number.


Written by Jim Harrington, AIA, Facilities Manager, MIT SA+P


  • MIT Police: 617‐253‐1212 OR 100 from an MIT phone
    Andrew Barosy: ajbarosy@mit.edu

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