Winter storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, heat waves, and forest fires can affect your company’s ability to function, even if your location was not directly hit by a severe weather event. Utility outages are on the rise all over the world because of aging infrastructures and increasingly severe weather. If your business lacks a standby generator, this might make an initial problem deteriorate into extra damage, downtime, and loss of assets.
1) Alarm system operations
Whether you have an industrial business or an office-based one, you likely have several alarm systems in place that must remain functional. Badge systems that allow access to restricted areas, air-quality or safety monitoring systems, and surveillance equipment prevent everything from fires to security breaches. When these systems are down, the risks to your business multiply dramatically. Companies such as Welland Power, a UK manufacturer of diesel generators, provide solutions that can keep all of these systems running seamlessly when surrounding businesses go dark.
2) Climate control
Computer equipment, paper files, furniture and infrastructure can sustain damage from excessive heat and fluctuations in humidity. Pipes can freeze and burst in extreme winter conditions, which can lead to catastrophic interior damage. Most important, your ability to maintain climate control in all kinds of weather is vital to the survival of your employees. The onset of heatstroke or hypothermia can occur rapidly once the power goes out.
3) Disaster recovery equipment
If any portion of your building envelope was compromised with water infiltration, you’ll need to begin restoration immediately to prevent further damage from mold, mildew, and excessive humidity. Fans, sump pumps, wet vacs, and rug shampoo equipment all need power to operate, and the longer your business space sits in dirty, wet conditions, the more the damage is likely to spread. Damp conditions inside walls and structures can sometimes lead to electrical arcing and fires, rust and deterioration of pipes and malfunctioning safety equipment.
Keeping electronic devices charged and operational provide a critical means of initial communication with first responders, but as your company moves through the stages of disaster recovery, you will need to develop contingency plans and alternate schedules for employees, customers, and vendors. In the chaotic aftermath of severe weather events, plans often change within minutes as new information becomes available on road closures, flooding dangers, and even new weather threats.
Your ability to coordinate emergency relief, recovery and restoration efforts, supply deliveries, and new production timeframes will depend on your ability to communicate with all parties involved. Email and computer systems are often a critical component of these communications, and few people have access to the extensive contact information needed if they cannot access the company servers. Even simple things such as providing real-time updates on your company website can become a chore if you can’t log in off-site or out of network to make necessary changes.
5) Minimize downtime
Resuming normal operations will depend on a number of external factors including ongoing weather threats, ability of first responders to access the area, open and operative roadways, ferries, and airports for vendors and supplies, as well as your employee’s ability to access your business. If cleanup and restoration can begin immediately after a disaster, this will significantly improve your ability to quickly get back to business and will ensure a safe working environment for your employees when they return.
Weather disasters can take their toll on any business; quick and efficient restoration of power can prevent initial damage from becoming even more damaging secondary problems from flooding, fires, and excess humidity.