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Safety, Security and Emergency Information

In the Event of an Emergency (Medical, Crime, or Fire)

Call 911. You can dial 911 from any phone. 911 is the nationwide emergency number. Be ready to report details, beginning with the nature of the emergency and the exact location (address).

Safety is a common concern for international visitors. U.S. movies shown around the world display an unrealistic amount of violence. Because of these and other media depictions of life in general in the U.S., many international visitors have unnecessary heightened concerns about safety. It is, however, necessary to be careful about safety anywhere.

Basic keys to safety in unfamiliar places are knowledge and prevention. With sufficient knowledge about how to protect yourself and your property, and how to avoid taking unnecessary risks, it is possible to better prevent being a victim of crime. Common sense safety behaviors include these precautions.

UC San Diego Campuswide Emergencies

UC San Diego Essential Phone Numbers
UC San Diego Emergency Preparedness

(858) 534-HELP (4357)

Registration for emergency notifications is voluntary and open to international scholars. Register online for UCSD emergency notifications (you will receive phone or text messages to numbers you specify).

UCSD's off-campus number with recorded update on campus conditions: (888) 308-8273

In the event of a campus emergency, will be updated with details and instructions.  

9-1-1 Nationwide Emergency Number

9-1-1 is the nationwide emergency number. Should you ever need to call, be ready to report details, beginning with the nature of the emergency and the exact location (address).

In San Diego County (including UC San Diego) you can now Text to 9-1-1. Calling is still the fastest way to reach 9-1-1.

However, texting may be the better option if you are:

  • hard of hearing, non-verbal or have difficulty speaking
  • in a situation where it's not safe to call 9-1-1 for help
  • having a medical emergency and cannot speak on the phone 
Links to information: 

You can also contact your local Police Departments for for non-immediate emergencies.

Immigration Emergencies

During normal business hours:
The International Faculty & Scholars Office (IFSO) is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (excluding holidays). For immigration-related emergencies contact our reception desk at (858) 246-1448. 


After hours or during holiday closures:
The UC San Diego Police department can be contacted at (858) 534-HELP (4357) with immigration-related emergencies when IFSO is closed (after hours or during a holiday closure). The UC San Diego Police department will contact an IFSO staff member to assist you with your immigration-related emergency.

Annual Security Report

UC San Diego publishes an annual campus security report (Clery Report) which includes data regarding crime statistics on and around campus for the past three years.

For information on these statistics visit the

Beach and Water Safety

San Diego has numerous beaches for locals and visitors to enjoy, each with its own amenities and regulations. The city of San Diego highly encourages all visitors to consider the following:
  • Learn to swim
  • Swim near a lifeguard
  • Never swim alone
  • Supervise children closely, even when lifeguards are present
  • Don't rely on flotation devices, such as rafts or inner-tubes. Even US Coast Guard approved life jackets are not a substitute for swimming ability
  • If caught in a rip current, swim sideways until free, don't swim against the current's pull
  • Do not swim while under the influence of illicit drugs, medications that may cause impairment or alcohol
  • Protect your head, neck and spine -- don't dive into unfamiliar waters -- feet first, first time
  • If you are in trouble, call or wave for help
  • Follow regulations and lifeguard directions
  • Swim parallel to shore if you wish to swim long distances
  • Scuba dive only if trained and certified -- and within the limits of your experience and training
  • Report hazardous conditions to lifeguards or other beach management personnel
  • Stay clear of coastal bluffs, they can collapse and cause injury
  • Never turn your back to the ocean -- you may be swept off coastal bluffs or tide pool areas by waves that can come without warning

Campus Safety Escort Service

The UCSD Campus Police provides escort service (someone to accompany you) to and from campus locations at night. Safety escort service is offered year-round (365 days) from sunset to 4:00am.

  • Call (858) 534-9255 or (858) 534-WALK.

Triton Rides, a free nighttime shuttle service available from 8:00pm to 7:00am from any on-campus location to another on-campus location or to an offcampus location (within a one-mile radius around the campus).

  • Call extension 4-WALK or (858) 534-9255, or
  • Use the Tapride app, available for download on iPhone/iPad and Android

For additional information, visit

Crime Prevention

  • Never carry large sums of money. Never tempt a thief by displaying money in public. All large amounts of money brought from your home country should be deposited in a bank shortly after arriving in the USA.
  • Never leave valuable things visible in a car. Items like luggage, money, cellphones, computers, and other electronics are tempting to criminals and easy to steal. If needed, hide valuables in the trunk of the car.
  • There are pickpockets in any large city in the world. Pickpockets are skilled at identifying vulnerable people who may be displaying valuables, and then coming close enough to steal the valuables without being noticed. Handbags should be kept closed; wallets should be protected. Bags or backpacks left unattended may be stolen.
  • Report any incidents of robbery or harassment on campus to the Campus Police by using the blue courtesy phones located around campus. Call 911 for EMERGENCIES whether on-campus or off- campus.
  • Some areas of San Diego are safer than others. Check with friends about the areas to avoid. There is a difference in Day Safety and Night Safety: some places are safe during daylight, but less safe at night.
  • There is safety in numbers in the city, especially at night. Going out with friends is safer than going out alone. When someone knocks on the door, make sure you know who it is before opening the door. Keep curtains closed at night and when no one is home, so people cannot look inside.
  • Always lock the door and windows of the house/apartment/room and car, even if leaving for only a minute.
  • Have keys ready upon entering your house or apartment.
  • Be cautious about giving out a personal address or telephone number to unfamiliar people.
  • Always remember to dial 911 for fire, police, or ambulance services. Keep this number near the phone.

Crisis Hotlines

Crisis Hotlines 

Telephone lines that can be called to find out information during times of crisis.

AIDS Hotline (800) 367-2437
Child Abuse Hotline (800) 344-6000
Mental Health/Depression/Suicide Hotline (888) 724-7240
Poison Information Center (800) 222-1222
Domestic Violence Hotline (800) 799-7233
Rape Hotline (800) 656-4673
Gambling Addiction Hotline (800) 426-2537
Planned Parenthood (888) 743-7526

Emergency Preparedness (Wildfires and Earthquakes)

Campus leaders will use this system to notify you in the event of an emergency affecting campus. For more information on emergency preparedness, please visit

Prepare for 72 hours. Experts advise that staff, faculty and students prepare to be on their own for up to 72 hours should an emergency or disaster occur. Emergency Supplies should include food, water and other supplies. For a complete list, please visit:

Wildfire Preparedness:

We face the danger of wildfires and earthquakes resulting in and power outage in Southern California. It is therefore imperative that our campus members are ready, trained to respond, and know what actions to take to recover from an emergency or crisis event; visit the UCSD Fire Safety Resources page to help you prepare.

For additional information regarding how to prepare for fire season, please visit

Earthquake Preparedness:

California is vulnerable to earthquakes. Here are a few points to remember during an earthquake:

  • If there is an earthquake, get under something, such as a desk or table. Your back should be to the window.
  • Protect your face, and try to make your body as small as possible.
  • If you are outside, try to move to an open area away from trees, power lines, or objects, which could fall.
  • If you are in an automobile, stop in an open area if possible.
  • If you are home, check utility lines and appliances for damage that could cause a fire. Do not touch electrical wires.
  • Turn on your radio for information.
  • Be prepared for aftershocks. Although most of these are smaller than the main shock, some may be large enough to cause additional damage or injuries.

Most people can survive an earthquake and minimize its damage simply by becoming aware of potential hazards and taking some basic earthquake preparedness measures. Prepare an earthquake kit with food and water, flashlight, radio, extra batteries, and a first aid kit.

Since earthquakes strike without warning, it’s important to practice earthquake safety now. The longer one waits, the greater the risk. Experts know that damaging earthquakes are coming but they don’t know when. Knowing that you know what to do (and what not to do) before, during, and after a quake, however strong, will assist in keeping you safe.

For more information about earthquake preparedness, visit:

San Diego Resources

Alert San Diego

Registration for emergency notifications is voluntary and open to international scholars. Register online for SD Emergency notifications(you will receive phone or text messages to numbers you specify).

You can also download SD Emergency App to your iPhone, iPad, or Android phone or tablet to get critical emergency information wherever you are. The app is designed to keep people informed and safe throughout events likely to affect the region, such as wildfires, or potential threats, such as damaging earthquakes or terrorist events.

San Diego Online Resources

Ready San Diego
San Diego County Office of Emergency Services
American Red Cross: San Diego County

Radio Stations

KFMB/ AM 760
KLSD/ AM 1360
KOGO/ AM 600
KPBS/ FM 89.5

State, Federal, and International Resources

Urgent Care and Emergency Room Information

Medical Emergencies

During a medical emergency, go to the nearest hospital Emergency Room or Urgent Care facility. A medical emergency is generally defined as a sudden, serious and unexpected illness, injury or condition, including severe pain, requiring immediate medical attention.

The Urgent Care Clinic located near campus:

La Jolla Urgent Care
8910 Villa La Jolla Drive
La Jolla, CA 92037
Map and Directions

The  Emergency Rooms located near campus are:

UC San Diego La Jolla Emergency
Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center
9434 Medical Center Drive 
La Jolla CA, 92037

UC San Diego Hillcrest Emergency
UC San Diego Medical Center
200 W. Arbor Drive
San Diego, CA 92103
Map and directions

Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla ER
Level II Trauma Center
(Located inside Prebys Cardiovascular Institute)
9888 Genesee Avenue
La Jolla, CA 92037