The practice of “sheltering-in-place” is relocating to a safe location on the premises and remaining there until authorities deem it safe to return to residences or offices. Pepperdine University uses this procedure during wildfires affecting its Malibu campus. The reasons for sheltering-in-place are listed below:
- The Los Angeles County Fire Department reviews Pepperdine’s shelter-in-place plans on a regular basis and supports the plans as the safest course of action.
- Pepperdine University works closely and cooperatively with the Los Angeles County Fire Department. As a result, the Los Angeles County Fire Department maintains a strong presence on campus during a fire.
- Campus buildings are constructed with fire-resistant materials whenever possible; campus roads provide natural fire breaks; fire resistant landscaping is utilized throughout the campus.
- Brush is cleared annually at least 200-feet from campus buildings. This practice creates firebreaks around campus buildings. In some locations, brush is cleared beyond the 200-foot mark.
- There are a limited number of ways to travel to and from the campus. These roads may be closed, congested, or dangerous as wildfires can travel quickly and change unpredictably. Roads should also remain clear to enable emergency responders to move freely and quickly throughout the area.
- The University’s shelter-in-place plan is well-practiced and historically proven successful.