Fire Flood or Quake: What to Do When a Natural Disaster Hits Your Business

Fire Flood or Quake: What to Do When a Natural Disaster Hits Your Business
  • Opening Intro -

    Natural disasters can strike at any time.

    If you are a business owner, you need to understand that you're likely looking at a matter of when, not if.


As such, you need to have a plan for what you’re going to do next when a natural disaster strikes your business.

Take Care of the People

Your first step should always be to take care of the people who work for you. Don’t expect your employees to come in if the facility isn’t safe, especially if their homes were also damaged—let them stay home and take care of their families. Your initial concern needs to be for the people around you who rely on you.

When it’s safe, make sure that you bring in essential personnel to help you determine how best to move forward.  As you get more information on the situation, set up a communication system with your employees to keep them up to date on all updates.

Listen to Emergency Personnel

Your next step is to find out what emergency personnel have to say. If there’s a state of emergency declared in your area, your options may be limited.

However, local leaders will keep you updated as the situation changes and will let you know when it is safe to return to your facility.

Pay close attention to what the transportation situation around you is going to be like, when you can expect to get utilities back, and when it’s going to be safe to start working on repairs. This will help you set up a realistic timeline for reopening your business.

Call the Professionals

Once you’ve got the ability to do so, you need to contact your insurance provider. You should have coverage for just this kind of situation, so use your policy as much as you can. Look at what is covered and what you’ll have to pay to fix yourself.

If you can’t fix everything right away, make a list of priorities—what absolutely has to be fixed now, and what is superficial and can wait a few months.

This is also when you should be calling repair professionals for help as well. They’ll make sure that your building is structurally sound and will explain to you what repairs will be needed. Listen to their advice and coordinate repairs between different contractors if you need too.

In the event of a fire, earthquake, or storm, you’ll likely need to contact a commercial roofer quickly. Ensuring that your roof is in good shape will help prevent further damage to the rest of your property. Even if other repairs take a little while, having your roof will protect the interior from the elements.

other valuable tips:

Get Back on Your Feet

Your final step is to get your business back on its feet. Figure out what kind of operations you can manage to get moving in the short term so that you can keep revenue streams healthy. You’ll also want to take a look at how your community is doing during this time and do what you can to help. Your customers will absolutely remember how your business acted in the aftermath of a catastrophe.

Your goals should always be to ensure the safety of your employees as well as the viability of your business after a disaster. Listen to the experts, call in professional help, and get things up and running when you can. A disaster might hurt your business, but having a good plan in place may help to ensure that you can bounce back from the damage.

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