Emergency Weather Procedures

snow on the c building water fountain

The winter season means the possibility of severe weather

The campus Public Safety Department will monitor the weather report for any storm systems over the next several months with potential to impact campus operations.  If it looks like the weather may impact operations, we will provide additional instruction via email and BC Alerts as soon as possible. In the meantime, please read on to familiarize yourself with our inclement weather procedures.

Emergency Closure Procedures provide details on our decision process, considerations for setting up voice mail greetings, and notification procedures should we have to close the campus due to weather (or any other emergency-related event). Student Housing will remain open unless otherwise announced.  

Employees are encouraged to sign up for “BC Alerts”, which is the College emergency notification system, to receive updates on our closure status.  To set up alerts, go to BC Alerts to add your personal email(s) and phone number(s) to receive instant notifications about status updates. You can also find easy updates on campus conditions by going to Bellevue College’s main website.  

Ways to Stay Informed

  1. BC Alerts, BC’s emergency notification systems.
    • Add your personal emails and phone numbers and receive instant notifications as soon as status    changes.
    • Go to http://bellevuecollege.edu/alerts/ to manage your settings.
  2. Visit the BC home page – Closure status will be posted.
  3. Call BC’s emergency hotline at (425) 401-6680

For Employees

The following updated Frequently Asked Questions Sheet (FAQs) was created to assist in answering common questions related to time and leave reporting during suspended operations due o inclement weather or other emergency. This is a non-comprehensive list and may change in accordance to policy or contractual changes.

UPDATED Inclement Weather _ Suspended Operations – FAQs

How We Decide When to Close

Because closing campus seriously disrupts programs and services for our students, BC makes every effort to remain open despite bad weather or other unforeseen circumstances such as earthquakes, fires or power outages. Puget Sound weather is among the least predictable in the country; for that reason, closure decisions are based partly on predictions but mostly on current conditions on the campus and the roads leading to it. Campus closure occurs only when:

  • current local weather conditions severely restrict travel to and from campus, or
  • campus roadways, parking lots, walkways and buildings cannot be maintained for public safety

Weather Related Emergencies

Public Safety initiates the closure decision process as soon as the threat of snowstorms appears in forecasts. The Vice President of Administrative Services and the President are involved in making a decision to close campus. A decision on whether to close the campus will be made by 4:15 a.m. if possible, and student, employee and public notification of that decision will begin immediately.

Notification Procedures

These procedures will be followed in any sort of emergency that affects campus operations.

On-campus notifications (if a decision to close is made during the day)

The President or the Vice President of Administrative Services sends an email to all BC network users. Public Safety also immediately begins to notify instructors and students in classrooms.

Off-campus notifications (all times of day)

The college will make closure information available to people off-campus the following ways:

  • BC Alerts, BC’s emergency notification system – BC will send an e-mail and/or text message alert as soon as possible whenever the college closes due to weather or any other emergency. Sign up for this service at http://bellevuecollege.edu/alerts. This system receives the highest priority among several channels the college uses to communicate emergency messages to students, faculty and staff.
  • BC’s emergency hotline message line – Call (425) 401-6680
  • BC’s home page -The College’s current status will be posted on the home page.

The college also highly encourages individual departments to use telephone trees to inform your staff.

Reasonable Efforts and Common Sense

If the college is staying open no messages will be sent/posted and faculty and staff are expected to make a reasonable effort to come to campus and maintain services for students as much as possible. At the same time, however, BC does not expect people to endanger themselves to do so. If there is a weather emergency, use common sense, check traffic advisories and other information resources and exercise your own judgment about your local conditions and circumstances. Be sure to follow your division or unit procedures for calling in absent if you are unable to make it to campus.

Last Updated November 28, 2022