As the 10th annual National Preparedness Month comes to a close, those of us at Preparis (including our Yeti) reflect on the lessons learned during such an important month. NPM began in 2004 sponsored by FEMA with the goal of encouraging people and businesses throughout the country to better prepare themselves in the event of a disaster. Commercial real estate professionals are not exempt from preparation.
If I were to tell you that there is a giant, ferocious Yeti lurking around your property, you would probably call me crazy – but it is true. The Preparis Yeti represents the ubiquitous and unanticipated threats that are posed to your building. Chances are that you are familiar with these threats:
Property managers have many responsibilities and the safety of their tenants makes it pretty high on their list. Threats come in all shapes and sizes and the approaches used once before may no longer be the best. Property managers must be educated and prepared for all emergencies which is why we are going back to the basics. Are YOU prepared?
September is National Preparedness Month, and you and your organization can play along with Preparis in the 30 Days 30 Ways challenge. This game was developed by Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA) with more than 50 emergency management agencies participating as a way for people to share information about emergency preparedness.
The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) mandates certain industries must have specific items in their first aid kit. But for most offices, a first aid kit won’t be enough in the event of a fire, tornado, or other threat. Do you know the location of the emergency equipment in your office? These items should be placed in an area where the whole team can access it immediately in the event of a crisis.
Emergency preparedness is a process. It’s not just about having a plan to do a fire drill once a quarter, but how to keep the business going during and after a crisis. This fact grows more relevant every day as companies face the challenges of a riskier society. Business continuity is about ensuring your company is prepared for any crisis.
Every year in the United States, more than 400 people die, and 20,000 visit the emergency department from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning. The most unintentional CO poisoning events happen in the month of January. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, and non-irritating gas, making it virtually impossible for a human to recognize, even at its highest levels.
According to a U.N. report, there were more than 370 natural disasters last year, affecting over 200 million people. This sobering statistic highlights the reality that disasters can happen anywhere, to anyone, often with little or no warning. In preparing your home and organization for such crisis events, you should always have an emergency kit ready.
According to a report by the National Fire Protection Association, U.S. fire departments responded to approximately 1,348,500 fires last year. More than 20,000 civilians were killed and about $12.5 billion of property was lost. You may think that you’ve already done your due diligence where fire safety is concerned; but if that begins and ends, like many organizations, with installing smoke alarms and conducting an annual fire drill, there are gaps in your preparedness that you should address.
The Voluntary Private Sector Preparedness Accreditation and Certification Program is moving forward, but no one really knows how soon it will be rolled out. Congress asked the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to create and implement a voluntary program of accreditation and certification programs for private entities that encourage private sector preparedness including disaster management, emergency management and business continuity programs.