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Disaster Planning: Are You REALLY Prepared?


Today, nine out of ten Americans live in places at significant risk of earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, terrorism, or other disasters.

Tomorrow, some of us will have to make split-second choices to save ourselves, our co-workers or clients. How will we react? What will it feel like? Will we be heroes or victims?

Most people and businesses understand the major threats that they may face in their area.


  • Midwest = Tornado / Severe Weather
  • Coastal = Hurricane / Tropical Depression
  • North / Northeast = Winter Storms
  • Desert = Excessive Heat
  • Fault Zones = Earthquake
  • Island / Coastlines = Tsunami
  • Flood Zones = Flooding

It is also important to think about the not so normal threats that you may face.

What if you were faced with…

  • Explosion at the corner gas station
  • Shooting at the mall ¼ mile away
  • Hostage situation at the high school down the block
  • Chlorine leak at the community pool up the street
  • Robbery at the corner convenience store
  • Derailment on the mainline in town

Your organization should perform an HVA:

The Hazard Vulnerability Analysis (HVA) is the first step in developing your Emergency Operations Plan. The HVA serves as a needs assessment for the Emergency Management program and allows you to identify gaps and create priorities. Joint Commission accredited facilities must update their HVA annually.

An HVA is a tool that helps you think outside the box. It allows your team to consider all possible threats.

The first step in a comprehensive HVA is to identify and prioritize the likely and not so likely events that the location could face.

EVENT TYPE (Specific)

  • Probability or Likelihood of Occurrence
  • Severity = Impact
  • Human
  • Property
  • Business
  • Mitigation = Preparedness + Response
  • Preparedness
  • Internal Response
  • External Response

Next decide who will be responsible for:

  • Communications
  • Resources and Assets
  • Safety and Security
  • Staff Responsibilities
  • Utilities

Planning ahead for ALL disasters is hard and takes collaboration from multiple sources. There are disaster planning specialist that are able to assist you. Here are a few helpful links for more information on putting a plan together.

Fire and Life-Safety Strategies, Inc.
Fire & Life Safety Inc.
Stan Szpytek

Advance Catastrophes Technologies (ACT) is your partner for total disaster planning, response and recovery. Disaster strikes in an instant, and although you can’t predict when it will happen, you can be prepared.

Companies across the U.S. are turning to ACT for advance planning, immediate disaster response, and expert restoration. Whether the event is a Cat 5 hurricane in New Orleans, a wildfire in Southern California or Tornado in the Midwest, ACT is there when it matters.

From the initial plan to the final steps of recovery, ACT is the single source solution for all of your disaster management needs.

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