Hurricane Sandy was a sad reminder of the devastating consequences that can result from an extreme event. In addition to the direct costs associated with the loss and damage to property, there was a severe impact on individuals, their families and the companies in which they work.
There are always lessons to be learned following a disaster and Hurricane Sandy was no exception.
- Focus on the outcomes and not the causes. Rather than spend your time focusing on the causes of potential events, focus on the outcomes which included loss of critical technology, loss of a building, denial of access to a building, loss of staff or loss of a supplier. Once you identify the challenges in these areas implement alternate operating strategies to manage through an event.
- Geography doesn't always matter. Just because you are not on the coastline when a storm strikes doesn't mean you will not be heavily impacted.
- Emergency notification. It is important to establish notification processes with your employees and to utilize multiple channels to communicate (ex. SMS, Twitter, landline, email, etc.)
- Relationships with restoration contractors. Although it may take some time, developing a relationship with a restoration contractor before an event is invaluable.
- Fuel shortage. Fuel was not easy to come by and without it many could not operate their vehicles, chainsaws, generators and other equipment needed during the recovery.
- Claim reporting. When you have a claim, it is important to call your insurance carriers and report immediately. It is also crucial to document the damage as accurately as possible (pictures, notes, etc.) When a disaster strikes insurance carriers are bombarded with calls. It is important to get your claim reported quickly so your name gets on the list before others.
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