It is important to call for help as quickly as possible when faced with an emergency situation. The following information provides guidance on calling for help at the University of Waterloo.  

Calling 911 | Calling UW Police | Emergency contacts posted in labs | Landlines

Calling 911

Calling 911 from landlines on campus

911 can be called from any landline phone on campus (including pay phones at no charge). UW Police are automatically notified and the exact location of the call is registered. It is recommended that after calling 911, you also call UW Police at ext. 22222 or 519-888-4911 to confirm your location.

Calling 911 from mobile phones

Mobile phones are not part of the University's phone system and as a result, the call is not registered with UW Police. Follow these steps when calling 911 from a mobile phone:

  • State exactly where you are (i.e. University of Waterloo, building name, street address and room number).
  • Do not hang up until told to do so by the 911 dispatcher.
  • After being told to hang up by the 911 dispatcher, immediately call UW Police.

Calling UW Police ext. 22222 or 519-888-4911

When an emergency occurs, always contact UW Police as soon as possible. UW Police has officers on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and they have the same law enforcement powers as regional police. When called, UW Police will always attend and assess the situation.

Always call UW Police if you:

  • Are working or studying after hours on campus and need advice on appropriate precautions.
  • See an injury, collision, or fire.
  • Need First aid when department services are not available.
  • Are being followed, threatened, or attacked.
  • See or hear unusual, suspicious, activity or disruptive behaviour.
  • Suspect criminal activity is or has taken place.
  • Need assistance with an emotionally upset or distraught person, or a person with a disability who is in difficulty.
  • Have any other personal safety or security matter.
  • Witness a chemical spill. 


The University requires that landline phones are located in the following areas:

  • Classrooms, grad offices, and computer labs must have access to a landline phone whenever the room is in use.
  • Podiums in lecture theatres all have landline phone access for use in emergencies.
  • Laboratories must have a landline phone. 
  • If an instructional teaching room is a teaching lab, a landline phone is required.

*All University landline phones must have a yellow 911 sticker (available from the Safety Office).

Emergency contacts posted in labs

Names of the laboratory supervisor and others to contact for a laboratory emergency should be posted in a location accessible to responding emergency services (recommend location on back of laboratory entrance door).

Emergency telephone number stickers (available from the Safety Office) should be placed on all laboratory phones. University first aid and fire alarm posters should be displayed in all laboratories (available from the Safety Office ext. 33587).

The following telephone numbers should also be available in the laboratory:

  1. Ambulance - 911
  2. Fire - use a fire alarm pull station to alert fire department

  3. UW Health Services - ext. 84096

  4. UW Police - 519-888-4911 or ext. 22222

  5. Chemical spills - call UW Police at 519-888-4911 or ext. 22222

  6. Plant operations - ext. 33793

  7. Poison control centre - 1-800-268-9017