Hurricane Preparedness for Businesses
Nova Scotia is no stranger to hurricanes. Storms with high winds and heavy rains can destroy homes and businesses. When Hurricane Matthew hit Nova Scotia in 2016, the storm inflicted $7.6 million in damages.
Every business owner should have an emergency plan in place in case a hurricane hits. Here are some tips that can help you be ready.
Make sure you have a plan
Prepare an emergency response plan which outlines what every employee should do to protect the business from an eminent storm. Even if there are no storms or hurricanes in the forecast, it’s a good idea to follow these steps:
• Ensure all employees are familiar with your emergency response plan and what their duties are.
• Maintain a backup electricity supply such as a gas-powered generator. Hurricanes can result in power outages that last for days.
• Back up all your data on a cloud or a device that’s stored in a safe location.
• Get emergency contact information from every staff member and service provider.
If there’s a hurricane warning
If Environment Canada issues a hurricane watch or warning, then it’s time to act. Here’s what you should do:
• Remove anything outside that may become a projectile in high winds such as furniture, barbecues and fallen tree branches.
• Ensure downspouts and gutters are clean of debris and obstructions.
• Anchor trailers and portable buildings to the ground as well as any outdoor equipment.
• Place sandbags in front of doorways to help direct floodwater away from your business.
• Check to make sure all safety devices such as fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems and smoke detectors are functioning.
• Securely lock up your property and ensure you and all your employees have a safe place to ride out the storm.
After the hurricane is over
Only after it’s safe should you return to your business and inspect the building and property for damage. Here’s what to do:
• Ensure the power and water are functioning and that all safety devices are still in good working order.
• Stay away from fallen trees that may be in contact with electrical wires.
• Report all damage to your insurance provider as soon as you can to begin the claims process. Take pictures and videos of what you see.
Business Insurance in Nova Scotia
At Eisenhauer Insurance Inc., our brokers can help your business secure comprehensive insurance coverage. We also sell home insurance, life insurance, and high-risk car insurance for drivers in NS. To get a free quote on a policy, contact us today at our location in Halifax or Dartmouth.