At the Sight of a Brilliant Flash . . .

Well into the second decade of the 21st century, the following “Emergency Procedure” was still posted in many of the classrooms and in the hallways of the P-Building:

At the sight of a brilliant flash of light or of the sound of an explosion, or when the command “DROP” is given, occupants of this room shall immediately assume the following position:  drop to their knees, under desks or other equipment; clasp hands behind the head, covering the neck; bury face in arms, protecting the head; close eyes and cover ears with forearms.  Remain in this position until instructed to do otherwise.


Clearly an artifact of the Cold War, the date at the bottom of the instruction sheet is 1974.  It is pleasing that the instruction “This poster must be placed in a conspicuous permanent location” was followed so rigorously.  By the time this “permanent” poster finally was removed, there was nobody in the building who would be able to locate room 812.  For many years, the English Building was the 600 building, so I’m not sure where to direct you for first aid.


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