The West Monroe West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce stands ready to help you with member resources. As always, if you have any questions, contact us!
As Tropical Storm Barry approaches the Gulf Coast of the United States, it’s important that communities and businesses in the potential impacted area prepare for the storm. There is still time to protect your business ahead of the storm. Here are six ways your business can prepare ahead of Tropical Storm Barry.
FINALIZE YOUR EMERGENCY CONTACT LIST
During disasters, communication with employees, suppliers, and customers is essential. Make sure you have the phone numbers, email addresses, or social media contact information for your key business contacts. Communicate with your employees your plan for yourself and your business before and after the storm, and ensure they know how to get in contact with you. Ensure you have backed-up copies of these important contact lists offsite, but still accessible.
ENCOURAGE YOUR EMPLOYEES TO PREPARE
As you get yourself personally prepared for the disaster, make sure your employees know what steps they can take to prepare as well. This includes making sure they have their own family emergency plan and are stocked up on basic disaster supplies including food and water, a flashlight, batteries, chargers, cash, and first aid supplies. Advance preparation is always key to ensure access to these supplies.
BACK UP YOUR DATA OFF-SITE
Ensure there is an updated backup of all crucial data related to your business—located somewhere outside the business. This could either be on an external hard drive or through cloud storage. This will help ensure nothing is lost if there is damage to your business.
REVIEW INSURANCE POLICIES
After a disaster is not the time to familiarize yourself with your company’s insurance plan. Review your plan now and what will be needed to file a claim—so that if you need to file it after disaster strikes you’ll be ready. Consider creating a copy of important insurance information to be included in your off-site back-up.
If your business has a physical storefront or buildings, you’ll want to protect it similar to how you would your personal property. Consider your inventory, equipment, and technology, where it is located, and if it can be moved or sheltered. As with any severe weather, the threat of power loss, or surge, is worth considering. What equipment can be taken off-line to limit the impact of fluctuation in electricity
Great Resources are available to the business community: CONTACT THE DISASTER HELP DESK FOR BUSINESS
The Chamber Foundation has resources for businesses of all sizes to prepare ahead of the storm. Our Disaster Help Desk for Business (1-888-MY-BIZ-HELP) can give your business guidance on how to prepare ahead of Tropical Storm Barry making landfall. Contact the U.S. Chamber of Commerce today to make sure your business is prepared.
Disaster Response (article adapted from US Chamberfoundation.org)