When it comes to serious natural disasters, hurricanes are among the ranks of some of the most dangerous. Although Florida’s summer weather can be amazing, hurricanes are typically active through the warmer months of the year due to rapidly rising water temperatures that create an ominous reaction in the atmosphere. A hurricane can cause serious damage to both life and property, so it’s important that you and your business are prepared. Here are some helpful tips on creating a business hurricane preparedness plan template to ensure that you’re ready for the next hurricane season and beyond.
Business Hurricane Preparedness Kit
One of the most important things you can do in order to prep for a hurricane is to create an emergency preparedness kit. It’s a good idea to make two separate kits: one that you’ll need to take with you in the event of an evacuation, and one to keep at the business in case the power goes out. Both kits should include important items like first aid essentials. Bandages, antibacterial ointment, and other first-aid supplies are absolutely paramount in case an injury were to occur.
Every business hurricane preparedness kit (or plan template) should include clean drinking water. You should have enough water per person you employ at one time in an amount that will last each individual a minimum of three days. Prepare your home for power outages by stocking up on flashlights and batteries. Place them throughout the house so everyone will have access to them if the power goes out. It’s not recommended that you use candles due to potential fire risks.
Other items you can include in your kit are non-perishable food items, a portable NOAA weather radio, some basic tools like a hammer and wrench, and important paperwork stored in a waterproof container. Remember to bring all prescription medications, paperwork, and pet items with you in the event that you need to evacuate. In your business hurricane preparedness plan or template, make a list of essentials and then stage them during hurricane season for quick access.
Plan an Evacuation Route for Your Employees
Most localities already have an evacuation route in place for their citizens. It’s important to remember that if you need to evacuate, you can expect severe traffic delays since everyone will most likely attempt to get out of the area at the same time. Keep this in mind when it comes to closing the business and letting employees go home in a timely manner. It might be best to leave a day early in order to avoid the traffic and chaos whenever possible.
The best way to start your plan for business hurricane preparedness is to collaborate and talk to your managers and leaders and come up with an agreed upon evacuation route or some templates for evacuation routes. If you have other family members who live in the same area, come up with a set meeting place like a hotel or other location that is far away from the path of the storm. Update your phone with everyone’s correct number so you can get in contact with each other as soon as it’s time to evacuate. Check with your local government for current evacuation routes and remember that if you are directly on the coast, you’ll probably want to evacuate your business and close things sooner rather than later.
Create a Hurricane Checklist
If you live in a hurricane-prone area, make a checklist of important things you’ll need to do. Whether it’s preparing your property to minimize damage or taking photos of valuables for insurance claims, a hurricane checklist will help you organize your tasks. Make sure you also have an emergency fund available that can cover things like the cost of gas, a hotel room, and food for your entire family. You can expect that emergency fund to last at least three days until it’s safe to return home after the storm has passed.
Proper disaster preparedness is the key to keeping yourself, your loved ones safe, your employees, and your business. Remember that property can always be replaced and that human safety is the number one concern in the event of a hurricane or other storm. With a bit of planning and some a plan (or template) for business hurricane preparedness, you’ll be able to safely weather the storm and return home so you can resume your normal life.
This article was originally published on 03/28/19
This article was updated on 11/19/20