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Preparing Alaska's Cultural Organizations for Emergencies Course

A training program especially designed for staff at collecting institutions in Alaska

Module 2

Learning Objectives

  • Understand how to establish collection priorities;
  • Understand what’s required for continuity of operations, i.e. be able to function "normally" even if your building is inaccessible, damaged or destroyed;
  • Understand the importance of collaboration and communication with other institutions and emergency organizations.
  • Understand the importance of all those floor plans with marked building systems, utilities, muster points, etc.


  • Read the topic introduction.
  • Watch the webinars.
  • Establish your Collections Priorities. From this list designate your salvage or evacuation priorities. Note these items or collections in your collections database and mark their locations on a floor plan.
  • COOP:
    • Think about alternate sites which could serve as logical operations centers if your building was completely unavailable for a significant length of time.
    • From the Module Introduction and/or COOP webinar information, make a list of essential records and equipment that your institution would need to have stored and accessible during this time.
  • Using your floor plan template, create a marked plan for each of the following listed items which are relevant to your institution.
    • Utility shut offs
    • Security systems
    • Fire suppression system
    • Collection Priorities
    • Continuity of operations potential sites and locations of materials
  • Finish  populating your contact and emergency lists, if not already completed:
    • Emergency Contact Numbers (Police, Fire, Insurance, Plumber, etc)
    • Volunteer Responder List (Staff, Board, Volunteers, helpful community members)
    • Training and Expertise Records
  • Begin introducing yourself to emergency managers in your community, such as EMS, Fire, Police, Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), Community Emergency Operations Center, Salvation Army, American Red Cross, etc. and let them know you are developing an emergency plan. 
    • Keep a separate page (Template) in your Plan for each organization that you contact.  This page should include contact information; dates that you interact with them (walkthrough, training, etc,); resources they can provide; resources that you might provide for them, notes, and so forth.
    • Schedule a walkthrough of your facility for the Fire Department, Ambulance, and Police Departments and a member of your Community EOC sometime in October, if it works for them. If not, then sometime during the cohort if possible. 
    • Suggestion:  Have each group tour separately. Try to schedule the Fire Department and Ambulance Crew on their training night when the entire department can walk through.  
    • Give copies of relevant floorplans (evac routes, collection priorities, shutoffs, etc) to emergency organizations.  They will know which are helpful to them


  • Develop outline for your continuity of operations plan and have prepared/ stored essential materials for everything required to start business the next day (or designate an RP and a completion date -- backup copies/ scans of essential records and store off-site).