Information for Emergency Situations

Safety is a priority in our Sagrado college community


Basic Procedures in Case of an Earthquake

  • During an earthquake: drop, cover, and hold on. Take cover under a solid table or near an interior wall far from windows or heavy objects. If you are outside, stay away from trees, structures, or other risks. Take cover under a solid table or near an interior wall far from windows or heavy objects. If you are outside, stay away from trees, structures, or other risks.

  • pre-established Eviction Routes and head to the meeting point. If you are trapped, keep calm. Use a whistle to call for help or pound on an object that does not pose a risk and may signal someone to where you are.
  • Keep your phone on the Security Bureau emergency number: 939-969-1515 and remember that we have emergency phones located around the campus.

Preparing an Emergency Backpack

Be Prepared-SPA_508

Map of the Meeting Points across Campus In case of Emergency

Evacuation Routes

  • Centro de Estudiantes

    Students' Center Building

  • University Pastoral Center

    University Pastoral Center

  • Edificio Barat Norte y Sur

    Barat Building - North & South

  • Edificio Sagrado Corazón

    Sagrado Corazón Building

  • Edificio San Miguel

    San Miguel Building

  • Edificio San José

    San José Building

  • Edificio Viña del Mar

    Viña del Mar Building

  • Teatro Emilio S. Belaval

    Emilio S. Belaval Theater

  • Residencia de Damas

    Ladies Residence Hall

  • Residencia de Varones

    Mens Residence Hall

Frequently Asked Questions about Earthquakes

The university has a Multi-Risk Management Operational Plan, which was prepared according to the guidelines established by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and in collaboration with the Puerto Rico Emergency Management Agency (PREMA) and the Emergency Management Office of the Municipality of San Juan.

The main purpose of the plan is to protect life and property from risks to which the institution and the student community may be exposed.

An earthquake can happen anytime, anywhere, without prior notice. It’s important to be prepared and follow safety measures that help save lives.

  • Have a personal and family communication plan and meeting points.
  • Have your emergency backpack ready. It must be accessible at all times.
  • Verify your work or study area and identify objects that may fall or must be anchored.
  • Practice dropping, covering and holding on.

As soon as you feel the jolt:

1 - Drop

Remember that, during an earthquake, you may lose your balance. It’s possible that you’ll not be able to walk or run. Avoid falling and injuring yourself.

2 - Cover

Take cover under a strong table or desk. If there are no tables or desks, cover your head and neck with your arms and go near an interior wall away from glass windows and doors. In hallways, stairs, or other areas where it’s not possible to take cover, move to an interior wall. If you‘re in a theatre, amphitheater, or church, crouch between the seats and cover your head with your arms.

If you’re outside, move to an open space away from buildings and power lines over your head. Drop; remember you won’t be stable on your feet. Assess the potential risks around you in case you need to move.

If you’re in a motor vehicle, pull over away from power lines, bridges, and buildings.

3- Hold on

You must hold on to a table or furniture, since they may move around during the earthquake. If you have nowhere to cover or nothing to hold on to, make sure you cover your head and neck with your arms.

The priority during an earthquake is to save lives. Don’t distress; keep calm.

Once the movement stops, check your surroundings and identify fallen objects and debris that may be dangerous. Look for the evacuation route and go to the meeting point. If you are trapped, keep calm. Use a whistle to call for help or pound on an object that does not pose a risk and may signal someone to where you are.

There are several scales to measure earthquakes: the Richter scale (magnitude), the Mercalli scale (MM, intensity), and the Medvedev-Sponheuer-Karnik (MSK, the intensity of ground shaking and its destructive effects).

The Richter scale is based on the energy released in an earthquake. It’s the most widely used and known.

Magnitude Description
Less than 3.5 It’s generally not felt, but it’s registered
3.5 - 5.4 May be felt, but only causes minor damage
5.5 - 6.0 Causes minor damage to buildings
6.1 - 6.9 Causes severe damage in highly populated areas
7.0 - 7.9 Causes great damage
8 or higher Total destruction of nearby communities

This is an open scale, so theoretically, there is no upper limit but that of the total energy accumulated in each tectonic plate, which would be a limitation of the ground, not the scale. A grading system using Roman numerals may be used. This one is proportional, so an intensity of IV is twice that of II.

After the earthquake of January 7, 2020 (magnitude of 6.4), campus structures were inspected several times by university personnel, as well as by an independent structural engineering firm. On Wednesday, January 8, personnel from Facilities, Conservation, and Services (ICS, Spanish acronym) made the first inspection, and on Friday, January 10, a structural engineering firm made the second one. Neither one found signs of structural damage caused by seismic activity.

After the earthquake of January 11, a new inspection of campus structures was carried out, both by university personnel and by the independent structural engineering firm, and no signs of structural damage caused by the seismic activity were found.

Yes. Each building has signs indicating evacuation routes. There is also a map with the four (4) meeting points on campus.
In both the men’s and women’s residence halls, the floor leader will direct the students in order to evacuate the building quickly.

Yes. The most recent one was on October 17, 2019, as part of the Great Shakeout. Professors, students, administrative staff, and visitors participated. We will repeat this exercise every semester as part of the emergency protocol.

Sagrado has a team of professionals willing to support the community in case of an emergency. Psychological, professional, and spiritual counseling may be requested in the following units:

Comprehensive Wellness Center
787-728-1515 ext. 6321

University Pastoral Center
787-728-1515 ext. 1208

Sagrado is located at the highest point of Santurce and is outside the risk areas in case of a tsunami.

The Multi-Risk Management Operational Plan of Sagrado Corazón University was prepared under the supervision of the Emergency Management Office of the Municipality of San Juan. In addition, the university maintains contact and works in coordination with the Puerto Rico Police, the San Juan Municipal Police, and federal agencies.

Office of Comprehensive Security and Risk Management
Main Entrance
787-728-1515 exts. 2553, 2555 and 2556

939-969-1515 (24 hours a day/7 days a week)

Emergency Services

Women’s Advocate Office

Rape Victims Help Center
787-765-2285 • 787-474-2028 • 1-800-981-5721

Barrio Obrero Police Station

State Police

Municipal Police

Pavía Hospital

Coronavirus alerts

Due to the outbreak of the new crown virus "COVID-19" that has been reported in several countries, the University of the Sacred Heart is actively monitoring the progression of this respiratory disease.

Although no cases have been detected in Puerto Rico, we share information and tips here to prevent any spread of this virus.

We recommend that you visit the website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where official and up-to-date information is disseminated:

The new crown virus "COVID-19" causes a respiratory disease, which could lead to death. It was first identified in Hubei Province, China, in late 2019. Thousands of cases have been confirmed in countries such as the United States, Canada, France, Italy, Egypt, and Russia.

It can be transmitted through human contact with animals. In addition, it could spread from person to person when someone comes into contact with the secretions of an infected person, such as cough drops or sneezing.

Symptoms may appear two to 14 days after you have acquired the virus. These include:

  • High fever
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nasal discharge
  • Muscle discomfort
  • Headache
  • Pneumonia

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus "COVID-19". However, the risk of getting it it can be reduced by following these recommendations:

  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home if you're sick.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a disposable handkerchief when coughing or sneezing and then throwing it away.
  • Disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, using a common spray or wipe cleaning product.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after coughing or sneezing.

Although there is no specific treatment for people who are diagnosed with coronavirus "COVID-19", research is underway. Experts advise seeking medical attention as soon as possible.

At Sagrado, we care about your health!

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