6 Emergency Scenarios a Mass Notification System Can Help Organizations Manage


Emergency Scenario Planning

Every organization is different, and as such, has different needs when it comes to safety and security. The number of people in the organization, the number of buildings, and where those buildings are located all impact how a safety plan is developed and implemented.

That being said, there are certain scenarios for which every organization should prepare. Organizations that don’t assess and plan for emergency situations run the risk of experiencing prolonged downtime and exposing their people to unnecessary harm. Mass notification can assist in helping you plan for situations and deliver critical communications that keep operations running smoothly and protect your people. In this blog post, we’ll outline six scenarios every organization should prepare for, and how a mass notification can help with safety and communication.

Active Shooter Incident

As the past few years have shown, there is no type of organization that is immune to an active shooter attack. Data compiled by the FBI shows that between 2000 and 2017 there have been 250 active shooter incidents in the United States resulting in more than 2,200 killed or wounded individuals. Having a plan for an active shooter incident is part of an organization’s responsibility to fulfill its duty of care. Mass notification systems can be used to activate lockdowns, share information and keep people out of the path of the shooter. Leveraging devices that utilize contact closures can activate door locks preventing the shooter from entering rooms or other areas of a building. Configured panic buttons can be leveraged to alert people quickly about an intruder. This means a response can be enacted much more quickly than using more traditional methods.

Severe Weather Event

Regardless of where your organization is, it’s going to be susceptible to severe weather. In 2018, around 400 people died to severe weather conditions according to the National Weather Service. Whether it’s blizzards, hurricanes, high heat, flooding, or some other calamity, having a plan for severe weather can make a substantial difference. A mass notification that can monitor CAP feeds from the National Weather Service can automatically trigger alerts when key weather phrases come up. This means stakeholders can get information much sooner and can begin making decisions about how an organization will handle a severe weather event. The sooner they decide whether or not to close, and how work shifts will be handled, the less likely it is that someone will be harmed.

Explore more ways to use mass notification for severe weather alerting

Cybersecurity Attack

Cybersecurity is a pressing issue. Attacks are becoming more sophisticated and the implications of these attacks can have a big impact on daily operations. According to Norton, the U.S. is the number one target for cyber attacks. A mass notification system that lives in the cloud can help organizations communicate with their people even if other critical systems go down due to an attack. Notifications sent from the cloud can still reach people on mobile devices even if other on-premises devices are incapacitated. This helps organizations deliver information about what kind of event is taking place and what people should do, minimizing downtime and reducing confusion.

Learn more about how cyber attacks impact downtime

Medical Emergencies

With the Medical News Bulletin reporting 37 million 911 calls placed every year, and average response times of seven minutes or more, organizations need to prepare for medical emergencies. Whether someone is experiencing a heart attack or stroke, or there has been some kind of accident, organizations need to know when 911 is called and be ready to assist first responders with detailed information. A mass notification system can help monitor and send alerts when 911 is called within an organization. This alerts administrators that an emergency is taking place and to expect first responders. Administrators can then direct first responders with greater ease, providing faster assistance.

Discover other ways to leverage 911 alerting


Fire drills are fairly commonplace, and with 3,500 deaths attributed to fires in the U.S. in 2016, it easy to see why. But mass notification systems can also lend a hand when a fire takes place. Systems that integrate with fire alarms can provide additional information beyond the wail of a horn that goes off. This information can be built beforehand and be sent to as many people and devices and needed as soon as a fire alarm is triggered. With additional information, people can have the directions they need to exit the building in an efficient manner, helping clear the building to get people out of a dangerous situation.


While fires are one cause to evacuate, the other scenarios we mentioned in this post may also require people to clear out of a building or area. However, as stated by NFPA, “Before an evacuation is declared, policy makers, emergency responders, and Emergency Operation Center (EOC) managers need to weigh the benefits against the dangers of an evacuation…” If your organization determines that an evacuation is necessary, mass notification systems can help deliver that message. Using a connected ecosystem of devices and delivery formats, mass notifications can reach everyone you need simultaneously to begin facilitating an evacuation. Of course, letting people know they need to get out is only part of an evacuation plan, they also need to know what they should do once they leave. A mass notification system can provide follow up messages with instructions as well as ask for a confirmation response for people who are safe and those that need assistance.

Determine Safe Places

Leverage the Power of Command Center

InformaCast Command Center from Singlewire Software now offers organizations an easy way to plan for these scenarios using icons and question-based templates, users can build messages with detailed information for any scenario they are likely to encounter. Messages can be configured ahead of time with information that is relevant to stakeholders, and then launched with a few simple clicks. This, in addition to InformaCast’s ability to increase the speed and reach of emergency messages with a wide range of device integrations and message formats, gives organizations a strong platform to help keep their people safe and informed.

Get started with 7 emergency message templates




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