Safe Havens for Navy Personnel

NEW ORLEANS (Aug. 29, 2011) Sailors sheltering from Hurricane Isaac help prepare cots and unload supplies. More than 100 residents were evacuated by the Louisiana Air National Guard to Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base (NAS JRB) New Orleans after water began topping the levees. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class John P. Curtis/Released) 120829-N-SD120-001

In the event of an emergency, Navy regional and installation emergency management organizations have plans and procedures to direct evacuation. When time permits, the preferred protective strategy for nonessential and non-emergency personnel is evacuation to a civilian shelter, remote safe haven, or designated place outside the danger area. In emergencies with only a short to moderate warning time, installation authorities may direct people to one or more designated safe havens.

Safe Havens

A safe haven is a pre-designated location that Emergency Management will activate as warranted for use as temporary protection. This location is usually not certified, insured, supplied, or regularly staffed. A safe haven may be local, either onboard or in the immediate vicinity of an Installation, such as auditoriums, gyms, schools, and similar structures. Or a safe haven may be remote, onboard either another geographically distinct Installation or even another Navy Region, in civilian or military lodging/housing facilities, including bachelor quarters and hotels. In an emergency, follow mass notification instructions to the identified safe haven.

If you are directed to move to a local or remote safe haven, there are a few things you should know:

  • Even though safe havens may provide water, food, medicines, and basic sanitary facilities, you should bring your emergency kit to ensure that your family has the items that meet its needs.
  • Safe havens usually involve staying with many people in a close proximity, so it is important to cooperate with safe haven managers and others assisting them.
  • Depending on the situation and regulations of the safe haven, pets may or may not be allowed. Ask your Installation Emergency Manager for clarification and/or restrictions if you are unclear. Ensure that you address the needs of your pets while at the safe haven by bringing enough food and water for them.

How to Prepare

  • Be informed. Navy personnel with NMCI or OneNet access must self-register their work telephone number and email address in the Wide Area Alert Network (WAAN) to receive notifications. Personnel are strongly encouraged to register their personal telephone numbers and email address to ensure they receive information even when they are not at work.
  • Make a family emergency plan, including an emergency communication plan. It will prepare you to cope with possible separation of family members.
  • Build in advance and take along an emergency kit that can sustain your family for at least three days.
  • Once you are in a safe place, muster with your command if you are military or civilian personnel or a member of the selective reserves.


Be Ready Navy—Be informed before, during, and after an incident; make a written family emergency plan; and build an emergency supply kit good for at least three days.

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