UNC Police: General Order 11-18 - Emergency Phones (including Call Boxes)


UNC Police: General Order 11-18 - Emergency Phones (including Call Boxes)

Document Information

Document Information Table
Subject Emergency Phones (including Call Boxes)
Date February 14, 2018
Number 11-18
Amends None
Supersedes 11-17R1
Approved by Brian L. James, Chief of Police


To establish policy and procedures for the inspection and maintenance of blue light emergency phones (call boxes) throughout campus.


It is the policy of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Police Department (UNC-CH Police Department) that all call boxes will be inspected regularly and that they will be maintained in good operating order to ensure their availability to both the campus community and general population in emergency situations.


Blue Light Emergency Phones (Call Boxes) - Call boxes are strategically located throughout the campus. These phone boxes activate by depressing a red button. The call is connected directly with the UNC-CH Police Department’s Emergency 911 Communications Center (Communications Center). The blue light on top of the box is also activated so that it can be easily detected by patrol officers. Faculty, staff, and students are made familiar with these call boxes during orientation briefings given by Community Services Unit (CSU) officers.

Elevator Emergency Phones - Elevator emergency phone boxes are placed inside elevator cars inside office buildings, residence halls, and parking decks. These phones are activated by lifting a hand receiver (on older models) or pushing a button (on newer models that do not have the hand receiver).


I. Determining Call Box Locations

Call box determination will be made jointly by representatives from the UNC-CH Police Department, UNC-CH Energy Services, UNC-CH Information Technology Services (ITS), and various UNC-CH Project Managers associated with construction projects. The following procedures will be used to determine placement of call boxes:

  1. CSU Sergeant (or his/her designee), the UNC-CH Project Manager, and the UNC-CH Department of Transportation and Parking (T&P) Construction Liaison survey the lot to determine the best location for the call box or boxes.
  2. UNC-CH Project Manager contacts UNC-CH Facilities Planning and Design (Planning) and ITS about installation of the station(s).
  3. UNC-CH Project Manager works with UNC-CH Energy Services and ITS to have the station(s) ordered and installed.
  4. UNC-CH Project Manager works with UNC-CH Planning to ensure the station(s) are ADA compliant.
  5. UNC-CH Project Manager works with the applicable UNC-CH Facilities Services shop(s) to have call box(es) installed.
  6. UNC-CH Project Manager, T&P Construction Liaison, and CSU Sergeant (or his/her designee) check the call box(es) to ensure it is operational.
  7. UNC-CH T&P Facilities Maintenance and UNC-CH Energy Services include the new call box(es) in their respective check procedures.
  8. All elevators will have an emergency phone installed.


II. Call Box Maintenance and Testing

The telephone lines on all emergency phones are directed to the Communications Center. All phones are inspected and tested at least monthly.

  1. All call box and/or elevator phones located in parking lots and parking decks will be tested by T&P Facilities Maintenance personnel.
  2. All call boxes located in areas of campus other than parking lots, parking decks, and elevators will be tested and maintained by UNC-CH ITS.
  3. All call box malfunctions (i.e. no 2-way communications, continuously ringing into UNC Communications, etc.) should be reported to the UNC-CH ITS. Call boxes with malfunctioning blue lights that are located in parking lots and parking decks should be referred to T&P Facilities Maintenance personnel on-duty. If no T&P Facilities Maintenance personnel are on-duty, then an email should be sent to the T&P Facilities Maintenance Supervisor with applicable information for repair.
  4. All elevator emergency phones located in areas of campus other than parking decks will be tested and maintained by the University Elevator Contractor through UNC-CH Building Services-Life Safety Services.


III. Procedures for Response

When a call is made from an emergency call box or elevator, it will ring in to the Communications Center on a phone designated for emergencies and the caller ID will show the location of the call.

A. Communications

  1. Upon activation, if communication is established with the caller and it is determined that it was an accidental activation, then no action is taken. If there is indeed an emergency, appropriate personnel (police, medical, etc.) will be dispatched.
  2. When receiving an activation from a call box or elevator emergency phone where no contact is made/heard, a Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) entry will be generated using the appropriate nature code.
  3. The area patrol unit will be dispatched to the call box or elevator location.
  4. Information relayed to Communications by the responding unit(s) pertaining to the activation will be documented in CAD.

B. Patrol Officer

When dispatched to a call box or elevator emergency phone activation, officers will respond being careful to note any activity that may be present as they approach the area.


IV. Campus Community Notification of Call Boxes

The locations of the call boxes are marked on the general campus map that is published by the T&P and available to anyone through a link located on their website as well as on the UNC-CH Police Department’s website.


V. Review of Call Box Placement

At least once every three (3) years, a documented security survey and review will be conducted by the UNC-CH Police Department to determine if other emergency call boxes are needed in other areas of campus. This will not apply to elevator emergency phones.


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Article ID: 132126
Thu 4/8/21 9:24 PM
Fri 10/6/23 4:09 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
UNC Police
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Chief of Police
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
11/01/2024 12:00 AM
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
08/04/2023 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
02/14/2018 12:00 AM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
02/14/2018 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
02/14/2018 12:00 AM