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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Business Owners: Do A Size-up After A Natural Disaster

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Businesses that do well after a natural disaster strikes are those that have prepared well for emergencies

If a fire, storm, flood, or other natural disaster hits your commercial property don’t panic. Don’t waste time considering what you should do. Have an emergency plan in place and do your own size-up.


What’s a Size-Up?
Some firefighters and emergency medical technicians recommend you get an overall perspective of the emergency, disaster, or situation. It’s too easy for business owners to be totally consumed by the visual impact of the natural disaster on the commercial property. Whatever appears to be worst to the naked eye is often accepted as the worst of the damage. This aspect of human nature comes into play after and during emergencies. It’s like coming upon a car accident and immediately attending to a person yelling for help because their foot is trapped underneath the car without first noticing that another person is unconscious inside the car and bleeding from a head injury. Staying clear-minded, being objective, and taking in the entire scene is tough but necessary. Before you act, gather as much information as you can.
 
Ask yourself three questions:
    1. What has happened?
    2. What is happening now?
    3. What is going to happen?

You can respond with more appropriate action if you fully understand what’s happened. You need to consider your own health and safety in the current situation and what may happen next.

Use More Than Your Eyes and Ears

Don’t rely only on your eyes and ears. Gather information from all five of your senses plus your instinct. What do you see? What’s the extent of the damage? Is anyone yelling for help? Can you hear a dangerous sound like gas leaking or water running? Do you smell smoke or anything suspicious? Is something hot to the touch or cold or abnormal? Is there an odd taste in your mouth (that could mean you inhaled an irritant)?

We’re Ready to Help Businesses Prevent Disaster or Respond to Disaster. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield 24/7 at 860.649.0836  

Trust Your instincts

Even if you don’t have obvious evidence to take a course of action, many experts suggest that if it feels like you should do something (leave the area, get on higher ground, shout out for others, etc.) it might be wise to follow that gut feeling.

How To Do A Size-up

Here are some steps for doing a size-up:
1. Gather facts.
What happened? Where are people and are they safe? Does anyone need help? Is the danger over?

2. Assess damage.
How extensive is the damage? Which parts of your business are damaged? Could there be other damage you can safely check for in another area of the building or business?

3. Consider probabilities.
What’s likely to happen next? How can your actions positively affect the outcome? Are there steps you can safely take right now that could prevent more damage (like shutting off the power or pulling the fire alarm).  

4. Assess your abilities to handle the situation.
Are you safe where you are or should you move? What are you trained and equipped to do? Who do you need to call to get the right type of help?

We’re Ready to Help Businesses Prevent Disaster or Respond to Disaster. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield 24/7 at 860.649.0836  

5. Establish priorities.
What’s most important to do first? Second? Next?

6. Take action.
Considering all the information you have, create a plan, make decisions, and take action. But do keep safety in mind.

7. Evaluate progress.
At regular intervals stop and think about your progress. Are your goals being met?  Should you change your course of action?
 
Educational Information For Businesses  
Every month on our blog, SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield publishes educational articles on how to prevent natural disasters and deal with them quickly and effectively should they occur. Here are a few other blog posts you might find helpful:  

Businesses Can Avoid Many Disasters

Businesses: Prevent Water Damage

Manchester Area Businesses Receive Priority With A PSA

You have lots of resources on the web that can help you be prepared for a natural disaster. On the Red Cross website under “Get Help” you’ll find at least seven essays on emergency preparation. The website for the Department of Labor’s  OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has a large emergency preparedness and response section.

Contact Us Anytime
In Manchester the team at SERVPRO has specialized training and experience in water damage restoration services, fire damage restoration services, mold remediation, commercial services, and natural disaster cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield anytime at 860.649.0836.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro
540 N. Main Street
Manchester, CT 06042
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

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