Getting Started

As a business owner, consider the following:

  • Risks that could affect your business
  • An alternate worksite if you have to relocate temporarily
  • An alternate supplier if your current supplier shuts down
  • Communicating with staff to ensure they know what to do in case of an emergency
  • Ways to help the community recover more quickly

A commitment to preparing today will help support employees, customers, the community, the local economy and even the country. It also protects your business investment and gives your company a better chance of survival.

Get started with emergency planning for your business

  • Identify the risks that might affect your company both internally and externally. Find out which disasters are possible and and determine which are most common in the areas where you operate.
  • Consider how a disaster would affect your suppliers and customers. A disaster elsewhere can affect your business if you can't get supplies or ship your products.
  • Meet with your insurance agent and discuss additional coverage such as flood insurance or business interruption insurance, which would cover lost income in the event of a disaster. Normal business insurance does not cover flooding.
  • Develop internal safety plans; evacuation, fire prevention, etc. Appoint a safety coordinator who will check fire extinguishers and arrange for practice and drills.
  • Protect and back up your vital records, both the paper ones and electronic data.
  • Make emergency preparedness a priority with you and your employees and your families. If you and your employees know that your families are safe, you can focus on getting the business back on its feet.
  • Make a communications plan. How will you communicate with your employees, customers and suppliers, especially if you are closed down for a while?
  • Make a plan for recovery, for getting back in business. Depending on your type of business, this could be an alternate location, emergency power, or other solutions.
  • Invest in improvements that will make your buildings and equipment less likely to be damaged.