2020 was a lesson in emergency management. From the COVID-19 pandemic to widespread power outages in the state of Texas to extreme flooding in southern states, the US saw it all.
Many businesses and organizations were not ready, however. From a lack of preparation to insufficient funds and humanpower to meet the needs of the community, many mistakes were made.
Let 2020 be a learning opportunity to avoid some of the most common emergency response planning mistakes. Read on to learn what not to do.
1. Failure to Train Employees
While your employees might be experts in their field, if that field isn’t emergency preparedness, don’t assume they will automatically know how to respond in an emergency situation. Every employee should be trained on what their role is during an emergency. You never know how people are going to respond in an emergency situation, so don’t leave it up to chance that they’ll be able to think rationally and do what needs to be done.
Employees should be trained and also given a chance to practice their roles. Hopefully, you never have a situation where the skills are needed, but it’s better to be overprepared than underprepared.
2. Lack of an Updated Plan
If the last time you updated (or even looked at) your emergency response plan was something in the previous decade, it’s time for some updates. Facilities change, layouts changes, procedures change, and most importantly, the people in the roles change. If your organizational structure has changed dramatically, some of the roles indicated in your emergency response plan may be obsolete.
Part of the ongoing training of employees on how to respond to an emergency is an annual review of your plan to make sure it is up to date.
3. Insufficient Funding
If you really want an effective plan, there needs to be a long-term commitment to funding your emergency response plan. Planning for emergencies should be an ongoing thing that is regularly funded, not something that is funded in bursts of money that then disappear for years on end. This results in a plan that is not fully executed, outdated equipment, and a lack of buy-in from employees who see that administrators are not committed to emergency planning.
4. No Coordination with Local Authorities
If you are going to rely on local authorities, such as police, the fire department, paramedics, or other providers, you need to coordinate with them ahead of time. They can’t find out that they are an integral part of your plan on the day of the emergency. Those agreements need to be in place ahead of time so that your needs can be factored into their plans as well.
Emergency Response Planning Includes the Right Equipment
Part of effective emergency response planning includes having the right equipment for your organization and its needs. When you review your plans and train your employees, be sure that equipment is reviewed as well.
For all of your emergency planning equipment needs, from mobile command units to medical tents to air shelters, contact us today.