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California State University, Long Beach
California State University, Long Beach Emergency Website
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Power Outages

In the past California has experienced severe power shortages resulting in power companies shutting off power to various jurisdictions on a rotational basis for periods up to 90 minutes.  In the event of a power outage on campus the following guidelines should be followed.

General notes about power outages

Do NOT call 9-1-1 solely to report the outage.  Excessive calls to the 9-1-1 system tie up the lines and prevent those with life threatening emergencies from reaching assistance.

The University Facilities Management Department and/or University Police may receive advance notification of an impending power outage.  Wherever possible attempts will be made to notify the University community of the impending outage, however outages are likely to occur with little or no warning. 

When reacting to power outages remember that if the University loses power, the surrounding area will in all doubt be blacked out as well. 

Traffic signals and street lights will not be operating.  When driving during an outage remember that ALL intersections normally controlled by a traffic signal IMMEDIATELY become FOUR-WAY STOPS.  ALWAYS stop at a darkened intersection, and then proceed with caution.

Disabled persons needing assistance in leaving a building should contact the University Police at (562) 985-4101 or the Disable Students Services at                 (562) 985-5401.

Campus telephones should continue to operate as normal and voice mail should continue to operate as well. However all telephone lighting and dialing displays may not be functioning.

When leaving the upper floors of a building remember the elevators will not be operating.  Anyone trapped inside an elevator should use the emergency phone to contact the University Police for assistance.

The University will monitor the dates and times of each power outage to ensure the power outage periods do not exceed a total of 90 hours per calendar year when a serving electric utility by contractual arrangement requests the University to decrease electrical power demand.

All operations using hazardous materials will be safely and promptly terminated upon power outage.

If working on a computer make it a practice to save frequently.

If in a room with no natural light source, ensure that you have access to a flashlight or lantern; designate someone close to an outside door to open the door if the lights go out.

Familiarize yourself with the path of exit from your building.

The Physical Planning/Facilities Management website ( is accessible through the CSULB home page (  The website contains information about the power crisis and outages from the ISO.

A situation update and additional instructions will be made available through the Office of Public Affairs voicemail system.  The information may also be available on the News and Events website (, which is accessible through the CSULB home page.

Campus shuttles will continue to operate on their regular schedules.

In the event of a power outage during day

The University will remain open. Business and instructional operations will continue to the maximum extent possible.

Should safety considerations prevent work from continuing the Deans, Directors, Department Chairs, or Faculty Members may reassign staff or classes to outside locations.

Faculty retain the discretion of canceling the remainder of a class if instructional quality or student safety is compromised.

Turn off the lights, computer equipment, copiers, printers, and as much other equipment as possible.

If you are in a building with no natural light source, carefully exit the building and/or regroup in a naturally lit area. 

Help those who need assistance.

Do not attempt to use elevators.

In the event of a power outage during hours of darkness

Remain on campus for fifteen minutes in the event power is restored quickly.  If power is not restored within fifteen minutes, instruction will stop and the campus business will close for the remainder of the evening.

Faculty should remind students of the general rules regarding power outages as outlined above, the need to exercise caution and avoid panic. 

University Police Community Services Officers with flashlights and radio communication to the University Police will be available to provide assistance and current information.  The CSO’s will be stationed at various key points throughout the campus

Return to Normal Operations

If the incident has resulted in the evacuation of part or all of a campus building(s) then those areas will remain closed until the University determines:

  • The area is safe to occupy
  • All immediate police and rescue activity has been completed.
  • Any and all investigations have been completed.
  • There is no longer a need to keep the area closed.

NOTE:  Due to the complexities involved in the preservation, collection, and investigation of evidence some areas may remain closed longer than others.