National Preparedness Month: Time to Make Your Emergency Plan

It’s always nice to get ahead and be above average.

Unless we’re talking about things like natural disasters.

And we are because September is National Preparedness Month (NPM).

2015 has already been a whopper of a year for natural disasters. In the first half of 2015 alone, insured losses in the United States were well above the $11.2 billion average, coming in at an estimated $12.6 billion.1 And it’s not that the U.S. experienced a huge event that pushed the numbers up. Instead, we’ve seen issues all over the country. Drought and wildfires. Severe thunderstorms and flooding. And brutal winter storms early in the year.

If that’s not enough—with four months to go in the year, the weather patterns may be lining up for a significant, and potentially destructive El Nino event.

A Theme Worth Pursuing

Given the year so far, the theme for NPM 2015 is especially poignant: Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.2

Ready.gov breaks out the month around four sub themes, which including flood, wildfire, hurricane and power outage—all leading up to National PrepareAthon! Day on September 30.

So in the spirit of NPM, we thought we’d compile some of our resources that can help with your business preparation in each area:

Week 1: Flood
Given the flooding many areas of the country already experienced this year, along with the dire El Nino predictions for the upcoming winter, we’ve been talking a lot about flooding and water damage. Here are links to some of our recent posts along with other key water-damage-related resources:

Week 2: Wildfire
Fires are an age-old problem for businesses, with damages routinely costing over a million dollars. That’s why vigilance against fires is always critical, whether or not your business is located in a region that is prone to wildfires. Use these resources to help with fire prevention:

Week 3: Hurricane
While the U.S. has enjoyed nearly a decade-long stretch without a major hurricane making landfall, the odds are not in our favor of this trend continuing. Especially when you consider that the odds of the last 25 major Atlantic basin hurricanes missing land are 1:5200.3 So don’t gamble on having another lucky year. Here are some helpful resources about hurricane preparation:

Week 4 and 5: Power outage and PrepareAthon!
Businesses need to be prepared for so many types of disasters that we wanted to end on a general preparedness note. When it comes to preparation, what’s really important is that your business is considering the types of disasters that could happen in your region, planning accordingly—and regularly updating the plan. If you have a disaster recovery plan in place, September is a great time to revisit it before the harsh realities of winter set in. If you don’t have a plan, you can use our Jump Start template to get started today.

Sources:
1Catastrophes U.S., Insurance Information Institute.
2 2015 National Preparedness Month, Ready.gov.
3 Phil Klotzbach, The Tropical Meteorology Project, April 2015.

Additional NPM resources:
http://www.ready.gov/september
http://www.ready.gov/business