According to the South Florida Regional Planning Council, there are numerous things businesses should do to prepare for a hurricane. From creating a plan of action to having the right back up generators and other systems in place, here’s a how to guide on preparing your Miami business for hurricanes.
Hurricane season runs between June 1 and November 30. A hurricane is a low-pressure weather system that includes severe winds moving in a counter-clockwise rotation at 75 MPH or faster. A Category 1 storm causes the least amount of damage, while a Category 5 storm causes the most damage.
Hurricane Watch Vs. Hurricane Warning
Hurricane Watch is the alert given when a hurricane is expected to potentially make landfall in the next 36 hours. A Hurricane Warning is extended when a hurricane with sustained wind speeds of 74 (+) miles per hour is expected to make landfall within the next 24 hours. By the time the Hurricane Warning is issued, there is likely already rain and high waves.
The Hurricane Survival Guide For Small Businesses
The South Florida Regional Planning Council published a Hurricane Survival Guide for Small Businesses. The guide outlines important things for small businesses to do ahead of time to prepare for a hurricane, as well as how to react after the hurricane has already hit.
The guide reads, “Advance planning and preparation are critical. All business owners should have a business emergency disaster and recovery plan. The plan should include steps to protect both your business and employees.”
Some of the most important elements on their preparedness guide include:
-Meeting with an insurance agent to go over your property insurance to make sure you are fully covered for floods, business interruption and so forth.
-Take the time to train employees how to implement hurricane procedures. Make sure there are designated times hurricane procedures are to take place. Set one or two employees in charge of coordinating the implementation of procedures.
-Make a list of all necessary hurricane supplies, shop for them and keep them somewhere on the property at all times. (Necessary supplies include: duct tape, masking tape, sandbags, emergency generator, storm shutters, heavy plastic sheeting, plywood, and so forth.)
-Create an employee alert roster used to inform employees when the hurricane plan is activated. This roster can also be used to check up on employees post-hurricane.
-Have a plan in place to protect your computer and files, this includes multiple back ups that cannot be damaged by the storm, such as storing things on the cloud.
-Have the right back up generator in place. You could lose power, which means all computers shut down, fans power off and your business is stuck at a stand still. You don’t have to live in the eye of the storm to incur blackouts and power outages. Some industries, such as hospitals, cannot shut down even when the storm is at its worst. Still, it might not be worth the investment to buy backup generators and portable AC/heat units that only get used once or twice a year. It’s often more cost effective to rent the units you need during and after a hurricane. This is a low-cost solution to opening up shop sooner and incurring less financial losses as the result of a hurricane.
When your power shuts down, Cooling Power is on stand-by ready to help. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We have generators, portable ac units and so much more available for rent and purchase.
Just before the start of hurricane season each year…
-Make sure that your business is completely up to date regarding local building codes.
-Take photos and videotape the interior and exterior of your building. Pay special attention to costly elements such as computers or other technology. This footage will serve as a great asset to you when you go to file for insurance or make a tax credit claim.
-Make sure that important files are backed up somewhere other than in your office.
-Check over your insurance policy and make sure you know where financial records, inventories and other important documents are located. Make multiple copies of these documents and store in different locations.
-If your company has a fleet of vehicles, make sure you have somewhere with higher ground to store them. Have a system in place to move the vehicles ahead of time as needed.
-Check over all of your emergency equipment to ensure it’s all there and in working order.
-Test the building’s emergency power generator under load. If you don’t have a generator, call Cooling Power at any time, day or night, to rent a generator of varying sizes and capabilities.
-Make necessary repairs to any leaks in the walls, doors, ceilings or windows.
All hurricanes pose a significant risk for danger and destruction, with some much more dangerous than others. There’s no guarantee except another hurricane is always around the corner, and the best thing you can do is be prepared. Cooling Power is here to help ensure you’re always prepared for power outages, no matter what Florida’s wild storms blow your way.