Natural disasters can occur at any time, and often without warning. If you aren’t prepared for the disaster, you not only put yourself and employees at risk, but your business as well. It is important that you begin putting together disaster supply kits now, and storing them in locations that will be easy to access and most convenient for you and your employees.
Workplace Disaster Kit Storage
The first disaster kit you should prepare is for the workplace. Aim to have a kit that will offer everything you and your employees need inside the office or workplace for at least 24 hours.
Items to include are blankets for warmth, some kind of light from flashlights or candles, food, water and other essentials. Keep the kit it in an area that is easy to access, but not too low to the ground. If there is a flood from a hurricane or rain storm, you don’t want it soaking through your disaster kit. However, you also want to find a location where you can grab it and evacuate with it if you need to.
Vehicle Disaster Kit Storage
Aside from the disaster kit kept in your office, make sure you have a disaster kit in your work vehicle as well. Provide each driver and work vehicle a disaster kit just in case something happens while they are driving. It also works as a second evacuation kit if you can get away in the middle of the disaster and drive safely, with the kit in tow. Some things to keep in your driving disaster kit include jumper cables, flashlight, food and water, comfortable clothing, first aid kit, shovel, ice scraper and sand for tire traction. Keep it either in the trunk of a car or underneath the passenger seat or in the backseat of a truck. It is better to have it inside the cab of the truck and not in the flatbed, just in case you can’t safely exit the vehicle.
Storing Food and Water
Some of the most important disaster supplies for your kits are food and water. You need to prepare for at least two quarts of water a day per person, more if you are in a hot climate. Water is also needed for hygiene and preparing food, so you should have as much as possible in the workplace. Water is best stores in plastic, fiberglass, metal or glass containers. Rotate the water every six months and keep it in a cool, dark place that is easy to access. Food should also be stored in a cool, dark place and replaced when it expires. Make sure food is always covered and you inspect it before eating it, just in case it spoils when the disaster occurs. When storing food, place the older food up front and the newer food in back so it goes by order of expiration date.
If you follow these tips, including having multiple disaster supply kits, a backup generator and an evacuation plan, it helps you prepare for multiple types of disasters, such as earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, fire and flood. Make sure you also have coverage from business insurance as well in the event a disaster occurs.