Essential Services Failure - Ourimbah Campus Procedure

Document Number000119

The Ourimbah Campus is a joint venture between the University of Newcastle and the Hunter Institute of Technology under the management of a single unit headed by the Director, Central Coast Campuses. The Central Coast Community College is also on Campus with independent management. In matters of health and safety the Director, Central Coast Campuses has full authority to act on behalf of all representation points on campus but maintains a close liaison with the Director, Central Coast Community College during times of emergencies.The safe and healthy operation of the Ourimbah Campus is dependent upon the availability of essential services to the Campus, including power (electricity and gas) and water/sewerage. The maintenance of those services is not problematic as recurrent maintenance, planned upgrades and commitment by the providers of the services ensures continuity under normal circumstances.However, provision of services is capable of interruption as has been experienced in the past. The degree of interruption will vary according to the severity of the cause. In determining procedures to deal with such a situation, the following principles are recognised and the procedures are predicated on those principles.


The role of the Manager, Facilities is campus wide and is to ensure rapid dissemination of information on the type of difficulty and the likely time scale for rectification. The Manager, Facilities has no authority to direct Campus staff, students or visitors as to their continuing presence at a specific destination on Campus, except in extreme emergency situations where for example immediate evacuation of a building is necessary.



The decision as to whether staff, students or visitors are to be excluded from a particular building, Campus facility or part or whole of the Campus itself on matters of health or safety rests solely with the Director, Central Coast Campuses or nominee, acting in consultation with and under the authority of the joint venture partners. Implementation of an authorised evacuation order will be undertaken in compliance with standing emergency procedures under the supervision of the Manager, Facilities/Chief Fire Warden or nominee.



The existence of a formal organisation structure that provides a communication channel to ensure all affected staff, students and visitors are properly advised is the responsibility of the Director of the Central Coast Campuses.



It is a requirement of all Campus personnel to provide a reliable and timely communication link with students, visitors and other personnel in the event of an emergency. As part of the establishment of these emergency procedures it should be understood by all Campus personnel that the source of information in relation to building services and other problems that might impact on health and safety is via their immediate supervisor. Should the immediate supervisor be unaware or insufficiently informed of the circumstances involved, that supervisor should contact his/her immediate supervisor until the appropriate information is available and conveyed down the chain of command. Every endeavour must be made to ensure accurate information is conveyed to avoid confusion and unnecessary concern.

The following procedures will apply in the event of an unplanned and unforeseen disruption to essential services to the Campus.


Officers of the Property & Estates unit are responsible for assessing the extent of the emergency situation, in terms of:

  • what ought to be done immediately to protect health and safety ( in consultation with the Occupational Health & Safety Officer, as available);
  • a time frame for taking further decisions in relation to health and safety if immediate action is not necessary;
  • assessment of the problem in terms of rectification; and
  • dissemination of information via voicemail or other communication means as to the nature of the problem, access restrictions and the time required for rectification.

In particular, office staff of the Property & Estates Unit will be fully briefed on procedures necessary to respond to enquiries.


The Manager, Facilities or nominee will inform the Director, Central Coast Campuses or his/her nominee and provide information in regard to:

  • the nature of the problem;
  • actions initiated resulting from an emergency situation;
  • rectification prognosis;
  • likely impact on matters to do with health and safety; and
  • if required, provide a recommendation(s).

Where major emergency situations are encountered the Director, Central Coast Campus or his nominee will inform the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of Newcastle, the Director, Hunter Institute of Technology and the Director, Central Coast Community College of the situation and confirm actions initiated for the protection of staff, students, visitors and the Campus facilities.


The Director, Central Coast Campuses will decide whether the Campus or parts of it are to be evacuated and for what period. This information will be conveyed to the Manager, Facilities or nominee who will set in train directions to all affected staff, students and visitors via the formal channels of communication, ie the formal organisation structure. Voicemail and other means of communication will be employed to ensure accurate information on the emergency situation is readily available to all Campus personnel.

All other inquiries in relation to this procedure should be referred to the Manager, Facilities, Ourimbah Campus.

Approval AuthorityDeputy Vice-Chancellor (Services)
Policy SponsorDeputy Vice-Chancellor (Services)
Policy OwnerDirector, Facilities Management
Policy ContactAssociate Director, Operations