The reason for an emergency preparedness plan is simple. Preperation
can save lives and money. The aim of a business emergency plan is to
reduce the risk of injury to your customers and/or employees, and to
reduce the damage to property and environment that often result from
a disaster. All employees should be aware of their workplace emergency
plan. Knowledge, planning and practice can reduce the risk of any serious
injury or death. Lack of preparation can be a fatal flaw in your overall
business planning. Each employee will have a certain responsibility
in the plan and should be trained accordingly. Your business, school
or organization should conduct maditory routine disaster management
drills. Tens of thousands of lives were saved at the World Trade Center
due to the high level of emergency preparation in the wake of the 1993
attacks. Most people exersized a disciplaned calm that can only come
from planning and practice. If you own or operate a business or service
company, you are responsible for the safety of your employees and the
general public. Take the time to prepare and don't get caught unaware.
The time to start is right now.
Basically, every emergency plan is different, but all of them have
some common features such as a list of officials and agencies that will
respond to the emergency, an outline of the structure and floorplan
of your operation, who is in charge of the situation and a list of responsibilities.
It should describe the communication systems that will be used, as well
as have a resource list for finding information, contacts and equipment
in a hurry. With a well thought out plan in effect and the proper first
aid and emergency supplies made available, the workplace will be a much
safer place and your personal and financial risks will be greatly reduced.
Check with the local chapter of the St. John's Ambulance or the Red
Cross for training opportunities for your staff. Remember, disasters
can happen anytime. Most areas in North America are prone to experiencing
some form of natural disaster once in a while. Be prepared, not scared.
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