As a former retail worker, one of the things you have to learn is all of the security codes and phrases.

I always thought the codes were specific to each store.

However, after researching, thanks to Common Cents Mom, I have realized that they are pretty much all the same.

So if you hear these codes, now you know actually what to do.

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Intercom Codes


When comes to warning, specifically for Walmart, the colors are the most important.

Code Blue

'Code Blue' is signifying that someone has called a bomb threat. Do not wait to see if it was real or not, GET OUT!

Code Green

If you hear 'Code Green,' that means there is an active hostage situation in progress.

Code Red

You may know what 'Code Red' is but it means that there is a fire, and it is spreading fast so you need to get out immediately.

Code Orange

When it comes to being in a store and you hear 'Code Orange,' that means that there has been a chemical spill.

On a complete side note, you may also hear this code in a hospital and that means that there have been mass casualties and some unforeseen disaster outside of the hospital that they need to be prepared for.

Code White

If you hear someone yell 'Code White,' you do not have to panic too much. There has been some type of accident that is not a real direct danger to shoppers but you should be informed.

Code Black

If you hear 'Code Black' yelled over the loudspeakers, you should know that there is severe weather outside. This means that you are most likely not allowed to leave the store at that time.

The store may actually close immediately because of the weather to get everyone safely back home.

Amber Alert
Getty Images/iStockphoto

Code Brown

If you hear 'Code Brown' all over the intercom, that means there is an active shooter in the store.

Code Brown could also mean any other violent situation that does not necessarily involve a gun.

Walmart Secret Words

While stores do use the colors to indicate situations, Walmarts also use two codes that also indicate specific situations.

Code Spark

When this is said over the intercom, it means that the register is overwhelmed.

Associates from all departments are expected to come and operate registers, bag items, and help with returns or carts. Once this code is announced, all Walmart employees are expected to head to the checkouts. 'All hands on deck' means that every single employee needs to temporarily aim their focus in reducing the stress in checkout queues.

Code Adam

This code is only for missing children.

When a child is reported missing while in the store, Walmart will share this code, and employees will monitor each entrance and the whole store in general until the code is lifted. In other words, when the lost child in question is found. In addition, anyone who is in charge of the store intercom may share a brief description of the child to make the search easier. This code name is in honor of Adam Walsh, a child who went missing in a Walmart store in 1981.

Have you heard of any of these codes before?

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