Bomb threats and suspicious mail

Learn more about what to do if you encounter suspicious mail items or receive a bomb threat.

Important phone numbers


Phone: 966 (internal) or 0800 373 7550

Fire service

Phone: 111

  • Know your street address, building number and suburb.

Bomb threats

If you discover an object that you suspect is potentially harmful, do not touch or approach the suspicious object but start the '4 Cs drill':


  • Why is it suspicious?
  • Quickly check for owners. 
  • Note its location and description. 


  • Tell your manager or supervisor. Notify Security on 966 (do not use a mobile phone.)
  • Evacuate the area or building, but do not set off the fire alarm
  • Make sure that people don't go near the package.
  • Do not send untrained people to look for other suspicious objects or devices.



  • Until Security arrives, senior staff members from the evacuated workplace are to start cordoning off the area.
  • Keep people at least 100 metres away from the suspect item.



  • Senior members from the evacuated workplace must exercise control of the scene until Security (or other specialist personnel) arrive and take over. 


When faced with a potential improvised explosive device (IED), observe the following safety precautions:

  1. Preservation of life is paramount. Protection of property is of secondary importance.
  2. No matter how harmless the item looks, treat it as lethal until it is declared safe by the experts.
  3. Only an explosives expert can declare an item safe.
  4. Lecturers/tutors: Maintain control of students until released by the emergency control officer.


Note that evacuation is slightly different from the standard procedures.

  • Evacuate the building as instructed by Security, a floor or building warden, senior staff member or the emergency services.
  • Instructions will be verbal (no fire alarms are to be activated).
  • The evacuation route and assembly area may be different from the standard fire safety procedure.
  • Take all your personal belongings. You may be unable to return to the area for some time.  


The procedure for dealing with a suspicious object can take several hours. Be aware that you won't be able to get into areas that are in the vicinity of the object.

Suspicious mail

Do you suspect that a mail item contains a hazardous substance?

  1. Stop what you are doing and put the item down.
  2. Do not smell, touch, taste, shake or empty the contents.
  3. Place it into a plastic bag or container and turn off any equipment that could disturb air flow, such as fans or air conditioning.
  4. Is contamination likely? Stay where you found the item and step back about two metres. This includes any people directly next to you.
  5. Immediately phone the Police on 111 and state that you have received a 'suspect parcel'. Provide as much detail as you can.
  6. Then contact Security on 966 (0800 373 7550 from a mobile phone).


If anyone is contaminated, isolate the person and call for medical assistance.

If possible, ask a co-worker who was not in the immediate area to notify the manager or person in charge so a temporary cordon of the area is arranged.

Do not allow people into the isolation area unless it is an emergency situation.

Follow the instructions of your manager, Security and emergency services.