Frank Thomas interviews Prentice McIntosh, continuing the conversation on hurricane preparedness, in this episode of Stephens Viewpoints. Prentice and Frank discuss steps businesses may take to cover the business disruptions that come with a hurricane. These can include a storm safety plan, disaster recovery plans, business interruption coverage and contingent business interruption coverage.
[:41] According to FEMA, almost 40% of small businesses that close during a disaster never reopen. How can a small business plan ahead to fight these odds?
[:52] A hurricane preparedness or natural disaster plan is important. What is most important for small businesses is to make sure that they have business income within their property coverage. Business income coverage would continue to pay your lost income and key employees while your covered business is down.
[2:16] Transit disruptions, power failures, and storms affecting suppliers and vendors can have a trickle-down effect on small businesses that can cause them to close their doors. Consider contingent business interruption, a sister coverage to business interruption coverage.
[3:16] Part of your disaster recovery plan needs to identify those key suppliers. Are there other suppliers you could use in the meantime to keep you in business? If not, it would be very important to have this contingent business interruption coverage to bridge the gap until they are back up and running.
[3:41] How can a business prepare their staff for a hurricane about to hit? When the plan is in place, the plan needs to be communicated to all the employees and all the employees need to be aware of how this plan is going to play out. It would be very beneficial to have a tabletop drill of the plan so that everyone is familiar with it.
[4:24] Someone needs to have the role of maintaining contact information post-storm, because all of your employees are going to evacuate and be spread out. If there is a way to monitor that and communicate with those employees, that is very important.
[4:43] What are some of the steps companies need to take during the storm? The first concern is safety. If you don’t evacuate, you need to make sure you have safety, food, water, and a way to communicate with others that have evacuated so you can protect your property.
[5:25] If you do evacuate, being able to communicate with local authorities, staff, and other employees, and getting back to your location to assess the damage are all important.
[5:41] During the storm, for safety, turn off all the utilities that you can, stay away from any windows, and take normal safety precautions. If you hunker down, make sure you’re in a safe place and have taken the necessary precautions.
[6:09] In the next episode with Prentice McIntosh, Frank Thomas will discuss with her what businesses need to do following a storm.
[6:14] For more information on this topic, please contact Stephens Insurance at 1-800-643-9691. To listen to more Stephens Viewpoints, check out our website. Insurance products offered through Stephens Insurance, LLC, National Producer Number 8844362. Securities offered by Stephens, Inc., Member NYSE, SIPC.
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