Alabama Businesses Should Be Disaster-Ready

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Release date: 
September 1, 2011
Release Number: 
1971-162

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – President Barack Obama has declared September National Preparedness Month and business owners are encouraged to have a plan in place to protect, investment and employees.

According to Ready.gov, America's businesses form the backbone of the nation's economy; small businesses alone account for more than 99 percent of all companies with employees, employ 50 percent of all private sector workers and provide nearly 45 percent of the nation's payroll. If businesses are ready to survive and recover from natural and man-made disasters, the nation and our economy are more secure.

Business owners in Alabama are urged to be informed of the types of emergencies that could affect them both internally and externally. Ready.gov provides a state-by-state analysis of weather-related risks. Business owners should be informed of the types of disasters that can occur in their area and make a plan for them accordingly.

“Knowing which disasters are the most common in Alabama is the first step in making a plan,” said Jeff Byard, state coordinating officer for the Alabama Emergency Management Agency.

It is also important to talk to your employees when making a disaster preparedness plan. One of the best methods of ensuring your company's recovery is to provide for your employees well-being. Practicing a plan with drills and exercises will help you, and them, prepare. You may also consider including emergency preparedness information in newsletters, company intranet content, periodic employee emails and other internal communications tools.

In addition to emergency planning, business owners can take steps to both safeguard their company and secure their physical assets. Meet with your insurance provider to review current coverage for such things as physical losses, flood coverage and business interruption. Prepare for utility disruptions by learning how and when to cut off utilities, and consider purchasing a portable generator. Also, decide how you would communicate with employees, customers, suppliers and others in the event of an outage using Ready.gov.

Business continuity and crisis management can be complex issues depending on the particular industry, size and scope of your business,” said Joe M. Girot, federal coordinating officer for FEMA. “However, putting a plan in motion will improve the likelihood that your company will survive and recover.”

For more information on emergency preparedness, visit th...

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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