Department of Emergency Management and Security

CONTACT INFORMATION: Open during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30p.m., Monday - Friday
4890 Alliance Drive, Suite 2200, Fairfax, VA 22030
Seamus Mooney

Civil Disorder

What It Is

Civil disorder may result from many situations, including a labor action (strike), political demonstrations and counter-demonstrations, or anniversaries of controversial incidents. Civil disorder can be a dangerous condition that can become increasingly chaotic and volatile.

Civil Disorder PDF Thumbnail


Civil Disorder Hazard Annex

Click on the appropriate link below to download a PDF copy of the Civil Disorder Hazard Annex page from the Community Emergency Response Guide.

English (PDF) | Spanish (PDF) | Korean (PDF) | Arabic (PDF) | Mandarin (PDF) | Vietnamese (PDF)

Key Terms

  • Shelter-in-place means selecting a small, interior room, with no or few windows, and taking refuge there.
  • A Curfew is an order from public safety officials requiring people to remain indoors between specified hours, typically at night.

What To Do

  • Sign up for Fairfax Alerts and have a battery or crank powered NOAA weather radio available.
  • If you know of a protest or demonstration that you suspect (or officials are warning the public) has the potential to turn violent, you should plan alternate routes to work, school, or any other destination. Avoid the area if possible.
  • Obtain as much information as possible about the current situation.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Ensure your insurance policies are up to date.
  • Learn First Aid.
  • Refer to the “Medical Emergency" hazard page.

  • Stay away from the area.
  • Lock and stay away from windows and doors.
  • Stay informed about the current situation.
  • Know emergency exit routes in the event you must evacuate.

  • Listen to official information.
  • Comply with any law enforcement directives.
  • Stay away from the area.
  • If you witness the event changing, call 911 with the information.

  • Check the area to make sure it’s safe.
  • Receive physical First Aid and/or mental health First Aid, if necessary.
  • Check personal property for damages, if damaged, report it to police.
  • Check in with family and friends by texting or using social media.
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