Businesses provide vital goods and services to our community and play an important role in the community’s recovery after a disaster.  It is therefore essential that all businesses be prepared for disasters.

Businesses can be impacted by all sorts of manmade and natural hazards, from flooding to fires to power outages to acts of violence.

According to information from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), an estimated 40 percent of businesses never reopen following a disaster, with another 25 percent failing within one year. Having a plan, along with the proper insurance, is critical because even a disaster in another location or region can affect small businesses by disrupting supply chains and communications.

Here are some tips to get started:

  1. Form a disaster team
  2. Make a list of all your contacts (employees, vendors, clients, First Responders and other valuable resources) and make a plan as to alternative ways you would communicate with them if normal communications were down.
  3. Create an emergency kit
  4. Back-up your data
  5. Know your risks and make sure you have adequate insurance to cover them
  6. Document and prioritize essential business functions – make a business continuity plan
  7. Have a back-up location in case your current location becomes non-operational
  8. Share your emergency disaster plan with employees and encourage them to be personally prepared.
  9. Test your plan periodically and update as needed.
  10. Be sure to check out Ready.gov/business for a wealth of information and a suite of tools to help businesses of all sizes plan for and remain open after a disaster.
Planning and Preparedness