Being prepared for a disaster can, and does, make a difference in the final toll that the event will bring. Without proper preparation, you may find yourself facing substantial damages and possibly the loss of life. Whether due to a simple lack of awareness, or a disregard for the possibility of disaster, some business owners instead choose to rely on emergency services alone whenever disaster strikes. This is never a good concept, especially when pre-disaster planning services are available.
Businesses and their staff face a variety of hazards:
- Natural hazards like floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes.
- Health hazards such as widespread and serious illnesses like the flu.
- Human-caused hazards including accidents and acts of violence.
- Technology-related hazards like power outages and equipment failure.
Considerations for Disaster Planning
The question then becomes one of choosing the best way to actually be prepared. Preparation means different things to different businesses in different locations. In particular, factors that you will need to consider include:
- Your location, and the prevalence of certain forms of weather or other natural disaster. The environmental concerns of a business operating in Austin, TX are different from one that is in Rhode Island. There are also local concerns, such as bridges, neighboring buildings, and your proximity to industrial facilities which should be considered in the event of a disaster.
- The type of business that you’re running. Whether or not you have certain hazardous chemicals in site or in nearby storage will affect your disaster planning significantly, as will the number of employees that you have, the number of floors in your building, whether or not you are open to the public, and the surrounding geography and its effects on your unique set of circumstances.
- The resources that are available in your area. This includes how far or close you are to emergency services, whether or not local water sources are available, and an awareness of different emergency contacts that may be specific to your business. For example, you need to know how to respond to a chemical spill, which includes the contacting of proper local authorities and agencies.
Comprehensive Understanding is Key
When it comes to pre-disaster planning, the more that you know about your business, the better. Knowing potential hazards due to risk and vulnerability assessment, for example, can help you to properly plan a response when an emergency takes place. Likewise, your planning can actually help you to further prevent expensive damage, and keep your employees safe at the same time. Having a professional inspection of your building will be one of the best ways to form a more all-inclusive view of the property, and will assist in informing you of the proper plan for emergency exit, containment, and more.
Another part of comprehensive understanding will be reaching out to local, state, and federal resources that can assist you with emergency training. Then developing a plan preparation so that you will be properly informed of potential risks and solutions to those risks. These programs and agencies differ from area to area, but are typically connected with local governments, and also tend to offer training materials and literature that you will find to be valuable.
Finally, make sure that your employees are all properly prepared. Even the best plan will fail if the people involved in executing it are unaware of the steps that they should take. The more that they know about the plan itself, the more they will be able to do to help make sure everything is properly carried out. This includes knowledge of emergency exit plans, procedures and protocols involved in emergencies involving hazardous materials even for employees not directly involved in their handling, and more. Disasters never happen under ideal circumstances, but pre-disaster planning ensures you give yourself the best chance of mitigating much of the damage that they do.
Emergency planning can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s just a matter of making it a priority and then taking it a step at a time. If you have questions about preparedness best practices, let us know. The Priority Response Emergency Plan (PREP) offered by Thompson Building Associates – at NO CHARGE – is vital to reducing the likelihood that you are one of those in the 50% Out Of Business statistics! Contact our office to learn more!
Author: Dick Wagner
Brought to you courtesy of: ResQ24 by Thompson Business Associates
Thompson Building Associates- Our Mission
Thompson Building Associates Inc. is a full-service restoration company whose business is satisfying our customers’ needs: quick response, professional guidance, and superior workmanship. Key to fulfilling our mission is staying on the top of industry trends, innovations and techniques. By building our team of associates through teaching, training, and an honest concern for their well being, we deliver our product with the highest level of customer service and value. Maximizing our potential by providing an expanding range of related services and investing in high technology solutions we provide continued profitable growth for the company and its employees.
Our Core Values
- We respect the individual and believe that individuals treated with respect, given responsibility, and direction will respond by growing and giving their best.
- We require honesty and integrity in everything we do.
- We believe in making commitments with care, then live up to them, in all things doing what we say we will do.
- We know that “high service” is key to our success. We feel a sense of urgency on matters relating to our customers. We own problems and are always responsive. We are customer driven.
- We are frugal. We guard and conserve the company’s resources with at least the same vigilance that we use for our own personal resources.
- Understanding our mission, our goals, and what we expect from each other is critical to our success.
- We love to compete and believe competition brings out the best in us.
- We understand that individual success only happens when other individuals succeed. We depend on each other.
- We see a huge difference between “good mistakes” (best effort, bad result) and “bad mistakes” (sloppiness or lack of effort)
- Work is an important part of life and should be fun.
- We are believers in the golden rule.