Not A Question of If: Have an Emergency Ready Plan In Place

“Not a Question of If”

The importance of having an Emergency Ready Plan in place

Blog contributor: Hilary Walker


According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), more than 40% of businesses never reopen after a disaster, and for those that do, only 29% were still operating after two years.  And guess what likely becomes of those that lost their information technology for nine days or more after a disaster?  Bankruptcy within a year.

Unfortunately, disasters never seem to pick a “good” time to occur. Like the fictional character “Mayhem” depicted in the Allstate commercials, catastrophe can happen at any given moment, when you least expect it. The question then is: are you prepared in the event of an emergency? It’s not a question of if but when. For instance, what would you do if you were at lunch and you get a panic call that there is a gas leak, or perhaps, water flowing out from under the sink? Would you be able to direct them how to shut off the gas or water over the phone?

Although an extreme situation, take for example how Morgan Stanley’s rigorous disaster planning paid off during Sept 11.  After 1993’s acts of terrorism against the World Trade Center, Morgan Stanley wasn’t satisfied with the four hours it took to evacuate its employees so the company developed a multi-faceted emergency plan and practiced the plan frequently. This ended up paying off when terrorists struck on September 11, 2001. Immediately after the attacks, Morgan Stanley employees were ordered to evacuate the towers and did so in 45 minutes. The company also increased its security presence, utilized effective communication strategies to provide timely information to management and employees, investors and clients, and regulators and the media. While twelve of its people did perish in the event, many more could have died had Morgan Stanley not implemented such a strategic and effective disaster plan that it practiced frequently.

A national sponsor of the American Red Cross’ Ready Rating program, and as part of our community service, ServPro offers a complimentary service called “Emergency Ready Planning” to help local businesses prepare for disasters. There is also a mobile app available for download so that critical information and contacts can be utilized from any smart device. It’s never too late to put a plan into action. The seconds, minutes, hours that can be saved from having a plan implemented may not only save time and money, but most importantly, a life and livelihood.


Contact Blog Contributor:

Hilary Walker

Servpro of New Hanover

Servpro of Brunswick and S. Columbus Cos.

P: 910-762-8180

C: 910-465-0301

F: 910-762-8188