Staff, faculty, and students that work and/or study remotely make use of online platforms that include live video and voice streaming to communicate to an audience. Just as emergencies can occur while at school or work, emergencies can also occur at home. It is important to know what to do should you be in an online meeting or remote learning platform and you are notified of or observe the host or a participant experiencing an emergency or threatening situation.


KNOW THE SIGNS. Know the signs that indicate that someone may be in distress or in danger. Signs will depend on the emergency being experienced and may include audible warnings, behavioural changes, verbal complaints, or changes to the physical environment.

KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. When preparing for a meeting or course, be prepared by gathering basic contact information for attendees, if possible – including address and phone number

KNOW PROCEDURES. Review emergency procedures on the Emergency Management website or through the Carleton Mobile App. Be familiar with the procedures for each type of hazard. This will be valuable information to pass along to participants should they encounter any of the identified hazards during the meeting or course.

Emergency Procedures for Online Situations (PDF, 154 KB)

KNOW PROTOCOLS. If you are a department or service that has established protocols for emergencies that occur during an online session, please ensure you are familiar with those internal established protocols and continue to follow them.


SITUATIONAL AWARENESS. Be aware of your surroundings and those of attendees present during the online session (when video/audio is available). ACT if you notice signs that a participant is in danger or if they request (emergency) assistance.

ENCOURAGE. If emergency assistance is required, encourage the participant (or someone in their household) to contact their local emergency service(s), if able to. This will assist in getting responders to the participant in a timely manner.

GATHER INFORMATION. If a participant has requested (emergency) assistance, gather as much information as possible to get the participant the help they need, including:

  • Name
  • Contact information (phone and address)
  • Nature of the incident and relevant details

FOLLOW PROCEDURES. Follow established hazard-specific emergency procedure information. If the participant is unaware of what to do, inform them of the procedures. If emergency services are required to assist and the participant is able, direct them to contact their local emergency services and provide support until assistance arrives. Follow directions provided by emergency personnel and authorities.

ENLIST ADDITIONAL SUPPORT. Request additional support from other personnel or attendees to assist in monitoring the situation or providing information.


REPORT THE INCIDENT. Report the incident through CU WorkSafe.

SEEK HELP TO COPE WITH TRAUMA. Consider seeking professional help to cope with the long-term effects of trauma.