5 Steps to Ensure Your Business Is Safe from Natural Disasters

Fran
Megan Jones
August 7, 2020

The world is always fielding different disasters: flooding, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, wildfires. Experiencing a natural disaster may cause physical injury, emotional stress and even death. Natural disasters may also cause damage to your business. How prepared are you if a natural disaster strikes? Would you be able to keep yourself safe if something happened while you’re at work? Preparedness has always been a crucial factor in dealing with these kinds of adverse events. This article will discuss steps to ensure safety from natural disasters in your workplace.

Prepare

Disasters are sudden and unpredictable. Create a list of doomsday scenarios and the probable impact on your work or business. Know which resources are available to you by making a list of the restoration equipment that you will need in times of crisis. This is a good to time to re-evaluate your business insurance policy. If your business is located in a flood-prone area, make sure to buy flood insurance, which is not included in a general commercial liability policy or even a business property policy.

Estimate the Disaster Risks in Your Area

Risk assessment plays a very vital role in determining how you should prepare. You should identify, assess, or understand disaster risks to be able to reduce the impact of a disaster. You can do this by analyzing trends. For instance, we can estimate future losses by assessing the previous ones. Is your business situated in a flood zone? Are there sinkholes in the area? When was the last big disaster in your area? These are good questions to answer to predict the future.

Create a Disaster Preparedness Plan

Preparing for emergencies plays a very vital role in ensuring the health and safety of everyone at work. It should start with creating a disaster preparedness and recovery plan. First, assess your risk and analyze your critical business functions. Determine which processes, employees, equipment and materials are essential for your daily operations. Strategize how to restore them quickly after the disaster. Moreover, make sure to prepare an alternative for the worst-case scenario.

Your employees must be aware of this plan, as well as your vendors, suppliers and clients. Prepare an emergency kit that should contain fresh water, non-perishable food, flashlights, extra batteries, battery-powered AM/FM radio, first aid kit and copies of essential documents. Run an annual test or drill on your plan and make sure to review your business insurance coverage.

Prepare the Necessary Facilities and Resources

You should include an alternate location in your disaster plan. It should be accessible so you can continue operations in case your work space is uninhabitable. Coordinate with your vendors and suppliers regarding their disaster preparedness and recovery plan to avoid extended interruptions. Have alternative resources in case your suppliers and vendors are also affected by the disaster. Have your data and other crucial applications backed up and store them in an offsite, safe, and secure location. You should also create a communication plan for your employees, vendors, suppliers, and clients. To be able to exchange and obtain information when the standard communication lines are not working. You should also consider work from home arrangements as part of your back up plan and prepare the necessary equipment for it.

Prepare Your Employees

In times of disaster, your priority should always be the safety of your employees. An emergency communication plan needs to be in place to be able to get an update regarding your employee’s circumstances during this crisis. Train your employees for disaster preparedness and recovery plans to ensure their survival. Create a team and allocate tasks. There has to be someone in charge of communication to update you on the situation of every employee. Also assign employees to oversee the basic needs of their colleagues. Ideally, all employees will learn first aid before a disaster.

Comprehensive knowledge of natural disasters is essential to be able to survive them when they occur at the workplace. Having employees working together in dealing with this uncontrollable circumstance is highly encouraged. Business owners should take the initiative in implementing the plan and providing the necessary equipment.

Have the Right Clean-Up Tools

Your situation will define the equipment you need when it’s time to clean up. For example, after a natural wildfire, you’ll need restoration equipment like air scrubbers, which help filter the air. Consider also a dehumidifier that removes excess moisture from the air to prevent mold. The airborne bacteria from floodwaters and water damage can result in lung disease. To prevent illness, immediate water damage restoration is a must. An air mover can be of help as it blows lower to the ground at high speeds, forcing quick evaporation of water from floors and carpets.

Make a list of possible perils and the appropriate fixes. Speak with your insurance agent to see if any of these costs are covered by your existing policies.

Final Thoughts

Natural disasters are unavoidable. But if you prepare for whatever it is that is yet to come, your chance of survival will be high, and recovery will be swift. Always have a plan to ensure your workplace safety.

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