COC conducts ‘large earthquake’ drill on Canyon Country campus

Aerial photo of College of the Canyon's Canyon Country campus, March 2015. Source: COC

Students and faculty at College of the Canyons (COC) received text, email and voicemail alerts Monday morning warning of a “large earthquake” on the college’s Canyon Country campus.

The warnings were just a drill for students to practice their emergency response proceedings and for the college to test its emergency notification system.

Eric Harnish, COC’s vice president of public information, advocacy and external relations, said the drill included alerts via text message, emails and phone calls, in addition to announcements through each classroom’s phone intercom system and each instructor work station’s digital messaging system.

Text messages to students and staff read: “This is the start of the ‘large earthquake’ exercise.  ‘Duck, cover and hold on.’”

It also told them that the drill was only being conducted at the Canyon Country campus and encouraged them to notify others and wait until further instruction arrived.

An alert sent to COC students and employees on Monday, April 17, 2017.

In total, the drill lasted approximately 30 minutes, according to Harnish.

The earthquake drill was part of a larger preparedness effort by the college which includes regularly-conducted drills, student guides about campus emergencies and online orientations to review safety information.

Harnish noted that the two campuses conduct different drills throughout the school year.  For example, COC’s Valencia campus held a drill Nov. 15 at Mentry Hall asking students and employees to practice sheltering in place.

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