Strategies to Help Business Owners Prepare for and Recover from Storm Damage
Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Crowley and South Johnson County offers tips on how local businesses can weather storms in the Grandview, TX, area.
SERVPRO of Crowley and South Johnson County understands the economic impact storm damage in Grandview, TX, can have on local businesses. A major storm damage disaster that disrupts normal business operations affects the business, its employees, and its network of customers and vendors.
How Storm Damage Affects Businesses
- Damages the structure, machinery, equipment, raw materials, and inventory
- Disrupts the provision of products and services to customers, which can result in lost business
- Interrupts the revenue stream and profitability of the company
- Interferes with the employees’ ability to earn a living, causing some workers to seek employment elsewhere
- Gives competitors the opportunity to capture market share and hire the trained, skilled, and experienced employees of the damaged business
- Decreases the revenue of contractors, vendors, suppliers, and logistics
Storm Preparation and Recovery
Disaster preparation, response, and recovery are essential to mitigate the negative physical and economic impacts of storm damage on a business, its customers, its employees, its vendors, and the broader supply chain network.
The Insurance Information Institute reports, “No business is totally immune from disaster. Every year, businesses temporarily shut down—or close forever—because of a disaster such as a flood, fire or hurricane. Forty percent of businesses do not reopen after a disaster and another 25 percent fail within one year, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).”
Business owners and managers can implement a proactive strategy to mitigate the negative impact of a disaster on business operations. Adequate insurance coverage is also very helpful.
In areas vulnerable to hurricanes, tornadoes, derechos, and severe thunderstorms, households can prepare for such disasters with a comprehensive approach that includes:
- stockpiling extra food, water, and emergency supplies such as batteries, medicine, and first aid items
- formulating a survival and evacuation plan
- becoming familiar with emergency resources.
Like homeowners, business owners must prepare for disruptive storms. For the business, though, the emphasis must be on restoring operations as swiftly as possible. The goal is to minimize losses and protect the revenue cycle. Adequate preparation for a disaster involves these basic steps.
Step 1: Formulate a written disaster recovery plan.
This business continuity plan outlines in detail how the management team and employees will respond to and recover from a disaster. This continuity plan may include an action step as drastic as relocation to a temporary facility.
This response and recovery plan should embrace the protection and recovery of the company’s non-tangible but very valuable assets such as its IP (intellectual property) and IT (information technology) infrastructure.
Step 2: Train employees.
Train and drill the workforce so that they are prepared to deal with a storm damage disaster.
Step 3: Store emergency supplies.
Collect an adequate supply of flashlights, fresh batteries, a first-aid kit, and walkie-talkies in case the power and communication grids temporarily collapse. Have a battery and solar-powered weather radio on hand to provide severe weather updates and alerts. Consider stocking food, water, and blankets for stranded employees. An emergency generator could be extremely useful if the power is unexpectedly interrupted.
Step 4: Maintain vital data offsite.
The resumption of business operations after a storm damage disaster requires access to critical business information. Offsite information storage should include information about employees, customers, vendors, suppliers, contracts, insurance policies, and more. Include an inventory of equipment, supplies, finished goods, and merchandise.
Disaster Response and Recovery
After a disaster, implement the disaster recovery plan. In the immediate aftermath of a disaster, a damage restoration company will take these action steps as needed:
- Secure the facility, including boarding up entry points if necessary.
- Make temporary repairs to minimize further damage, including emergency tarping.
- Relocate salvageable equipment and property to a safer area.
- Document property damage. Include photos and video.
- Clean up the damaged property. Workers should wear safety gear. Save damaged items in case the insurance adjuster needs to inspect them for a claim.
- Initiate contact with the insurance company to begin the claims process.
- Save receipts for all disaster-related expenses.
Once security and cleanup issues have been addressed, the focus should pivot to the restoration of business operations as laid out in the Disaster Recovery Plan.
As a locally owned and operated damage restoration company, the SERVPRO of Crowley and South Johnson County team is dedicated to assisting businesses that have been devastated by property damage. The goal is to clean and restore the damaged property so that the facility can resume normal business operations as soon as possible.
For more information about storm damage restoration in Grandview, TX, contact the SERVPRO of Crowley and South Johnson County office by phone at (817) 297-8588 or by email at office@SERVPROcrowley.com