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Disaster Planning and Recovery for Libraries: Writing a Disaster Plan

A comprehensive collection of links to aid you in creating a disaster plan for your library as well as resources for disaster prevention, recovery, training, and outreach.

South Central Regional Library Council's Disaster Plan

SCRLC's Disaster Plan includes a list of vendors who assist with the salvage of materials of all types. This word document can be used as a template for your library's plan.

Pocket Response Plans

Shelter-in-Place Plan

What does it mean to "shelter-in-place"? That is when you must seek shelter in a safe room where you are (in your home or office) after being directed to do so by authorities, because of an event such as a tornado, chemical incident, or terrorist attack. Click here for a link to a Red Cross video explaining the process in short, simple steps.

Plan Templates

Example Plans

Emergency Unit Supply Box

When creating your plan, don't forget to also compile the necessary tools for use in a disaster situation. This list has been created and generously shared by Cornell's Department of Preservation and Collection Maintenance.


The following items should be stored in a secure but accessible place

  1. Polyethylene Sheeting (4 mil), 10' x 25' rolls, to cover shelves and books
  2. Cutters, to cut sheeting
  3. Duct Tape, to secure sheeting
  4. Paper Towels, for partial interleaving and air drying
  5. Heavy-Duty Extension Cable (100' length)
  6. Power-Bar Multi Outlet
  7. Wax or Freezer Paper, cut in sheets for freezer packing
  8. Pens, Pads, and Pencils, for marking boxes and documentation
  9. Flashlight
  10. Disposable or One-Use Camera
  11. Hard Hat
  12. Safety Gloves
  13. Safety Goggles
  14. Disposable N-95 Respirators, in case of mold
  15. Protective Aprons
  16. Fishing Line and Plastic Pegs, for air drying
  17. Mylar Sheets
  18. Cordon Tape
This project is administered by the South Central Regional Library Council.