Spring can bring about some of the year’s most dangerous weather and wreak havoc on many aspects of a company’s operations. This article discusses the weather threats to watch out for during spring and measures businesses can take to minimize damage.
Dangerous Spring Weather
Unexpected severe weather increases the risk of property damage, injury and even death. Here are some common types of spring weather events:
- Tornadoes—According to AccuWeather, tornadoes are by far the most extreme event in the spring. Winds from tornadoes can exceed 200 miles per hour, sending debris flying.
- Thunderstorms—Severe thunderstorms can produce strong winds, large hail and lightning. If lightning strikes in a dry area, fires can occur.
- Flooding—Snowmelt, ice jams and heavy rain can produce large amounts of water runoff in a short period of time, resulting in floods.
- Blizzards—Snowstorms that occur in the spring may cause power outages or property damage. They can also force businesses to shut down.
- Excessive heat—The second half of spring typically brings higher temperatures, leading to heat-related disorders or illnesses if employees work in outdoor environments.
While springtime weather may be unpredictable, businesses can minimize risks to both people and property by preparing for all situations. Business leaders should consider the following precautions:
- Develop a plan. If employees have to travel to work, severe spring weather could put them in danger on the road. In addition, shelter-in-place orders or power outages could also pose threats to onsite employees, clients and customers. Having a plan in place can help everyone remain safe during an emergency. Outline what employees should do in different circumstances—such as a power loss—and have a communication protocol. Conduct drills until the plan becomes second nature.
- Keep an emergency kit on hand. This kit should contain emergency supplies, including flashlights, water, a first-aid kit, blankets, extra batteries, a toolset and current contact information for state and local entities.
- Secure the property and outdoor assets. Dead trees, weak structures and unsecured materials can become airborne hazards during windstorms, damaging buildings or external systems. If severe weather is in the forecast, complete preventive maintenance, close windows securely, bring outdoor furniture inside and clear out storm drains.
- Back up data. Severe weather can cause power outages and may physically damage equipment. Back up critical data often to help smoothly rebuild systems.
- Obtain proper insurance coverage. An experienced insurance broker can help business leaders understand and plan for the impacts of catastrophic weather. Complete a coverage review to ensure there are no gaps in coverage that will result in an uncovered loss.
By minimizing the opportunity for property damage, preparing employees to act and working with an experienced broker to ensure the appropriate insurance coverage is in place, businesses can better mitigate risks during the springtime.