Friday, August 24, 2012

Businesses prepare for hurricanes

WASHINGTON – Aug. 24, 2012 – As Tropical Storm Isaac bears down on Florida, residents prepare their homes and businesses for a possible hit. It’s unclear whether Isaac will become a hurricane, but experts suggest that homeowners and business owners prepare for the worst, now and in expectation of future disasters.

The U.S. Small Business Association offers disaster preparation guidelines on its website.

Top business preparation guidelines

• Have an emergency communication plan in place before the storm hits. How will co-workers stay in contact if the physical location of a business is damaged?

• Turn off all non-critical work devices before the storm hits.

• Alert a third party about business evacuation plans in case a storm makes it impossible to get to your place of business.

• Protect important business documents that you may need quickly, such as property insurance policies.

• Have cash on hand to pay employees or contractors after the storm.

• Know which employees are certified in CPR, EMT, etc.

• If possible, disconnect a building’s main electrical feeds.

• Have a plan to notify all employees, post-storm, about damage and how you’ll move forward.

• Review contracts that are date sensitive and have a backup plan in place to handle potential problems.

• Assess all functions that could be impacted by a lapse in business – cash flow, bills, budgets and any upcoming events.

The SBA also offers webinars to help owners and office managers create a disaster preparation plan. For more info, visit the SBA website.

© 2012 Florida Realtors®

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