hurricane preparedness

Hurricanes: During and Post-Storm

Staying safe during a storm and what to do once the storm is over. 

During a Storm: 

  • Emergency personnel should stay at the facility only if safe to do so. Notify local authorities if personnel are staying on site.
  • Keep names and phone numbers of your electrician, heating contractor, plumber, fire department, police department and other key numbers easily accessible .
  • In an emergency situation, comply with all directions and emergency orders issued by authorities.
  • Keep your first-aid kit available at all times.
  • Designate times for key staff members to call into conference calls for situation updates.
  • Update employee emergency hotline and/or company intranet and website with posting on the status of the facility.
  • When safe to do so, patrol the property continuously. Watch for roof leaks, pipe breakage, fire, or structural damage.
  • Constantly monitor any boilers that must remain online.
  • During power failure, turn off electrical switches to prevent re-energizing of equipment until necessary checks are completed.

Post-Storm: 

IMMEDIATE

  • The devastation a hurricane leaves in its wake depends on the location, population density, and hurricane size. In the immediate aftermath of a hurricane, it is important to quickly and calmly assess the situation.
  • Do not move seriously injured individuals. If high-rise buildings are in the general area, falling debris may make open areas more dangerous than remaining inside the buildings. Watch out for fallen power lines and broken gas lines.
  • Provide search and rescue personnel with last known location of any missing victim(s).
  • Stay away from power lines, buildings, and any object that might fall.
  • Secure the site and provide watch service if necessary.
  • Visually check for open bus bars, conductors, and exposed insulators before re-energizing electrical systems.
  • Take pictures to start documenting damages.

RECOVERY

  • Initiate process to check on the well-being of employees and their families. If support is needed and available dispatch to employee homes.  Employees who are concerned with the safety and wellbeing of their families will not be available to support company recovery efforts.  The sooner families are safe the more quickly they can participate in company recovery efforts.
  • Look for safety hazards such as live electrical wires, leaking gas, flammable liquids, corrosive/toxic materials, and damage to foundations or underground piping.
  • Repair automatic sprinkler protection and/or water supplies to get protection back in service as soon as possible.
  • Restore fire protection systems, if necessary.
  • Conduct two-inch main drain and alarm tests on automatic fire protection sprinkler systems to verify public water supply availability.
  • Contact key personnel and notify contractors to start repairs. Control smoking and use hot work permits where applicable. Maintain fire-safe conditions at all times.
  • Cover broken windows and torn roof coverings immediately.
  • Clean roof drains and remove debris from roofs.
  • Notify key customers, suppliers, and partners of office/facility reopening and any necessary property or operational changes resulting from storm damage.

View our other Hurricane Preparedness guides: 

For those affected, if you have a claim to report always contact your carrier immediately. It’s the fastest way to get claims processed. Insurance carrier claims teams are available 24/7.


Note: This communication is for informational purposes only. Although every reasonable effort is made to present current and accurate information, Oswald makes no guarantees of any kind and cannot be held liable for any outdated or incorrect information. View our communications policy.