Coast Businesses Need to Prepare for Gustav
From: MEMA News Release Filed 8/29/08 GCN
Businesses and business owners must take
precautions as Gustav approaches, said Mississippi Emergency Management
Agency Director Mike Womack.
Businesses located along the Gulf Coast are
not the only ones that could be affected by Gustav. Inland businesses
could be affected if coastal businesses and suppliers have to stop
production or temporarily close.
“When faced with an actual tropical
system, our business owners will be able to take fewer risks if they plan
ahead and prepare early for any possible emergency,” Womack said.
Business owners should have recovery plan for
their business and take the following precautions:
- Consider a
telephone calling tree or a voice recording to communicate with
employees during an emergency.
- Designate an
out-of-town number where employees can leave an, “I’m okay” message
during a catastrophic disaster.
- If you have
employees with disabilities or special needs, talk with them about what
their needs may be during a disaster.
- Plan for payroll
- Review and
practice what you and your employees intend to do during and after an
- Establish facility
Establish warning and evacuation procedures.
- Make plans for
assisting employees who may need transportation.
- Make plans for
communicating with employees' families before and after a hurricane.
- Purchase a NOAA
Weather Radio with a warning alarm tone and battery backup.
- Survey your
facility. Make plans to protect outside equipment and structures.
- Check if your
phone system will work without electricity. If not, have at least one
phone line that can operate without electricity.
- Make plans to
protect windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection.
Covering windows with plywood is a second option.
- Consider the need
for backup systems such as portable pumps to remove floodwater and
generators to provide emergency power.
- Prepare to move
records, computers and other items within your facility or to another
- Consider how to
recover any digital data if there is a significant power outage or if
computers and servers are damaged. Keep tax and payroll records, records
of inventory and essential information at an alternate site.
- Establish an
alternate operating location and back-up suppliers.
- Maintain three to
five days of inventory. If a disaster occurs, the loss isn’t as great.