Organizations need to develop emergency response plans to prepare for natural, technological, or manmade disasters.

Emergencies occur every day. The specter of terrorism and workplace violence — coupled with age old threats such as fire, earthquake, hurricane, flood, and other natural, manmade or technological disasters — mean the dangers facing employees, facilities, and operations are, perhaps greater than they’ve ever been. To mitigate these threats, companies must be able to detect threats and determine effective protective actions making best use of internal resources, as well as external emergency services.

Emergency response is the collective action taken at a site to stabilize an incident that has the potential to injure people, damage property, interrupt business operations, or contaminate the environment. All companies are required to have basic emergency response plans. Those with confined spaces or hazardous substances regulated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and/or the Environmental Protection Agency must comply with additional regulations. Today insurance underwriters are also assessing emergency plans and limiting coverage, declining to participate, or charging higher premiums for companies that lack adequate plans.

What Will You Say When They Ask What Happened?
Today’s increasingly complex social, political, and economic climate has forced every organization to re-evaluate its readiness to handle an emergency. To better manage the risks around safeguarding people, protecting physical assets, and/or preventing environmental contamination when an emergency occurs, senior management should be asking themselves the following questions:

  • Have we identified and assessed all of the potential perils that threaten the safety of employees and business operations?
  • Who is in charge when an emergency occurs?
  • Are our emergency response plans compliant with the applicable regulations — including local, state, and federal as well as nationally recognized best practices?
  • How do we know that our plans will meet the challenges of an actual emergency?
  • Have we organized effective team(s) with a capability to respond to credible threats?
  • Are our emergency procedures threat and building-specific?
  • Are our emergency response plans properly coordinated with those of external emergency agencies?
  • Have we adequately trained our personnel?
  • Have we exercised our emergency response plans with a variety of scenarios?
  • Do we have the expertise needed to design, conduct, and evaluate an emergency response exercise?
Who's Looking Out for You?
Enigma's Risk Consulting practice is staffed with professionals who help clients develop the necessary capability to respond effectively to whatever peril threatens people, property, operations, or the environment. Enigma is involved in the design and development of standards for disaster and emergency management. This knowledge enables us to stay in the forefront of a rapidly evolving field where new regulations or best practices appear almost daily.

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact us.

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