Preparation is a key factor in minimizing the impact of a hurricane on a business. Many managers deliberate how to adequately prepare for a hurricane while conserving time and resources. As a guideline, the American Red Cross has coined the term “Red Cross Ready” to describe what preparations are adequate for an anticipated hurricane. Following the three steps below will help your business become “Red Cross Ready” before a hurricane hits.
Develop a Contingency Plan
Employees and clients may benefit from a visible evacuation plan, which is often required by a fire marshall. Performing emergency drills reminds employees of protocols to follow in the event of an evacuation or shelter-in-place situation. Consider whether employees will be quickly dismissed following an evacuation. If employees are required to remain on site, they will likely request a method to reach emergency contacts.
Build a Kit
Families are encouraged to build two kits: one to “stay” and one to “go.” Businesses can make similar preparations. A “stay” kit can include flashlights, blankets, and a reserve of canned food. A “go” kit includes crucial items such as hard backups. Decide which items must be removed in the event of an evacuation and ensure they are easily accessible in case of an emergency. Backing up files online reduces the amount of bulk that must be evacuated.
Remember the phrase “knowledge is power.” Familiarize yourself with state and local procedures regarding natural disasters. Receiving up-to-date weather information will help prepare for an oncoming storm. More importantly, develop a method of receiving emergency alerts, even after the power goes out. Maintain current emergency contacts for the business as well as its employees. Understand government guidelines about business closures.
Hurricane season is an eventuality on the minds of families and businesses alike. In determining which course of action will be adequate, business owners may follow the guidelines set by the American Red Cross to make a property (and its occupants) “Red Cross Ready.” This includes developing a plan, building a kit, and gathering information. Getting your business “Red Cross Ready” will provide peace of mind and reduce potential loss. Find more recommendations from the American Red Cross on how to prepare for hurricane season here.
If you have any further questions about how to improve your hurricane preparedness, visit the Entrusted blog. If you find yourself with water damage after a tropical storm, call the Entrusted team immediately.