Northwest Community Hospital Administrative Policy

Bomb Threats — Bomb on Site


  • To mitigate the implications of a bomb threat.
  • To collaborate with law enforcement in their investigation.
  • To prevent injury to patients, visitors, and employees in the presence of a bomb.


Northwest Community Healthcare will work to protect its internal and external customers from any threat of/exposure to explosive devices. Further, we rely on the expertise of the local police department for direction in the management of such an event and will collaborate fully with their direction. The local fire department will stand by in case of need for rescue and recovery. Management of such an event will be done in accordance with Hospital Emergency Incident Command System (HEICS).


1. An employee receiving a bomb threat will call "911" and clearly report the threat of or the presence of a bomb.

2. The second call should be to Security via #3333.

3. The employee will complete the "Bomb Threat Checklist" to the best of their ability.

4. The operator will call Security by two-way radio. Security will proceed to the site of the call.

5. The administrator on call and the administrative consultant will be notified by Security.

6. The decision to alert staff by overhead page will be made by administration. A "Code Green Alert," followed by the area involved, is an option for the overhead page. (As of 1/1/03, "Code Gray" will be an option page indicating that there is a security Incident.)

7. If this is a threat:

  • Security department-specific procedures on bomb search will be implemented.
  • The designated manpower pool from facility support, is called by Security by radio for a briefing at the security desk.
  • The manpower pool is briefed on the bomb search procedure.
  • Two- or three-person teams are set up to search the hospital.
  • Area of search will be dictated by location given by caller.
  • All surrounding areas of the entire floor level are searched, and the floor levels below and above the reported area are searched.
  • If a suspicious parcel is located, move everyone away from the parcel, secure the perimeter of the area, and wait for the police department to arrive.
  • If no location is designated, the search will be conducted according to the judgment of the chief security officer/ administration.
  • Command will be assumed by the police department upon their arrival.
  • Recipient of threat will immediately fill out the bomb threat telephone call profile form.
  • Law enforcement officials will give direction regarding continued search, evacuation, or discontinuing the search.


1. The employee noting the presence of a suspicious device will make every effort to notify "911" and Security personally, or through a colleague.

2. Remain calm.

3. Move carefully but intentionally away from the bomb.

4. Move others carefully and intentionally away from the bomb.

5. Do not touch the device.

6. Take care to not bump furniture, or to disturb the device.

7. Gently close the door if possible.

8. Do not use a two-way radio or a wireless phone in the vicinity of a potentially explosive device.

9. Move everyone a good distance from the device. If possible, move beyond a fire door.

10. Follow direction of Security/police department officers for safety.

11. If faced with an intruder with a bomb, employee will exercise best judgment.

12. If threatened by an imminent blast, immediately drop prone and face away from the expected detonation.


1. Either a bomb threat or presence may escalate to a "Code Green" evacuation incident at the discretion of administration.

2. Police officers will determine risk of the suspicious device and its proper disposal.

3. Thought must be given to keeping employees and visitors from uninvolved departments from entering the area of risk.

4. Marketing should be notified of the event when reasonable to do so.

5. Consider what information should be shared with employees and customers.

6. A Critical Incident Stress Debriefing will be provided by Chaplaincy Services.

Source: Northwest Community Hospital, Arlington Heights, IL.