While no amount of planning will be able to address every type of emergency, having an emergency plan in place is essential to helping keep your workers safe and your business property protected. By providing your employees with the key components needed to handle most incidents, you can minimize damage and potential injury.
However, creating an effective emergency plan can be complicated and overwhelming — especially when you consider all of the potential disasters that could strike. Where do you begin?
Planning takes teamwork
If the only emergency plan your company currently has is a fire evacuation plan, it’s time to get to work. First, build your planning team with individuals from all appropriate departments. This may include personnel from human resources, your legal department, your maintenance staff, and safety department. If you have any workers who currently volunteer as first responders in their communities, consider inviting them to join the planning committee to provide a valuable perspective on handling emergencies.
If the only emergency plan your company currently has is a fire evacuation plan, it’s time to get to work.
5 components of an emergency plan
Once you have identified your team, work together to create your emergency plan. An effective emergency plan should cover the following areas:
- Emergency escape procedures and routes. This includes floor plans and designated evacuation routes.
- A system to account for all employees after an evacuation.
- Rescue and first-aid care assignments for appropriately-trained employees.
- Preferred means of reporting fires and other emergencies.
- Names, job titles, and telephone numbers of those responsible for the emergency action plan.
After the plan is developed, develop processes to support the awareness of the plan. Schedule reviews of the plan with your employees and peers on an at least quarterly basis. This will help ensure that everyone stays on the same page about the emergency procedures and all employees who have specific responsibilities under the plan are aware of their tasks.
Yes: it’s impossible to plan for everything. But by taking the time to develop an up-to-date, well-maintained plan, you’ll have taken the first steps towards being ready to deal with whatever emergency situations arise.
One area you shouldn’t have to worry about after an office emergency is your insurance coverage. Visit our business insurance site to make sure you’re adequately covered.
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