Wednesday, December 12, 2018


Fire Escape: Getting Your Business Through A Wildfire.

November 22, 2018 by  
Filed under Business, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThySistas.comWhen starting their own company, natural disasters like wildfires won’t often be on people’s minds. You will have a lot of work to do, ranging from choosing a name to getting your first customers through the door, and this will make it hard to focus on much else. Of course, though, with the recent fires spreading through California, it could be worth thinking about this before it’s too late, especially if you live somewhere which is very prone to this sort of issue. To help out with this, this post will be exploring some of the steps to take in this process.

Making Your Property Safe

The first part of this to consider will be your property. The people working for you will have to spend a lot of time in these places, making it worth looking for ways to make them safe. Of course, one of the best ways to do this is by simply using the right building materials. Wood will catch alight much faster than brick or metal, making it a bad choice when you’re trying to keep a place from burning down. Below, you can find some additional examples of the sort of issues which make a place more likely to burn than others.

^ Safety Gear: When a fire breaks out near your property, having the right gear to deal with it can be a God-send. Sprinklers are great if the blaze gets into your building, helping to keep it under control, while making most of the place very hard to burn. Along with this, fire escapes, meeting points, and other safety areas need to be well-established before you can consider the place safe. A lot of companies struggle with this sort of work when they are starting out.

^ Barricades: You’ll almost always have a little bit of warning before a fire reaches you, even when you work very remotely. When you have the chance to prepare for this sort of event, it will always be worth doing it, with loads of modern methods being available which can protect your property. Water-based barriers are great for this, as they will be impossible to burn, while also being very easy to construct when the time is right. Of course, this is something you should always have available.

^ Warnings: Having a wildfire appear on your doorstep is something which a lot of people aren’t ready for. It never has to be this way, though, with loads of tools available which can make it easier to tell when something like this is on it’s away. Outdoor smoke detectors have started to hit the market, giving you the chance to create a fireproof perimeter around your property which will let you know when a threat is on its way, even if you’re somewhere very rural.

Making Yourself Safe

Once you have made the property itself nice and safe, it will be time to start thinking about the people inside. This will all be far easier if it is just you working inside the place, as you can simply leave, following the evacuation orders in your local area. A lot of people waste time when they are going through this process, choosing to pack or find possessions when they are on the edge of an inferno. This sort of approach is never worth it, with material goods only having value to you when you’re alive, and fire being very good at taking this from you. Instead, you should drop everything you’re doing and simply walk away.

When you have employees to look after, this sort of job becomes a little more complicated. Fire drills will usually consist of everyone gathering outside of the building, being checked to make sure that they are all there, and, finally, the building will be sweeped to make sure that no one is left inside. In an actual emergency, though, it will be hard to manage something like this. Instead, as people leave the place, you should have them tick their names off of the sign out sheet. Once everyone is gone, this will leave you with a good idea of who might be left stuck inside the building.

Assessing And Repairing

After a fire has passed, it will eventually be safe to return to the site of your business, and this will be time to start assessing the damage. If the whole place is destroyed, this will be nice and simple, with photographs and video being all you need to make a claim on your insurance to put everything right. Along with this, though, the damage could be a lot less severe. In this case, it will be a good idea to try and document everything of value which as been damaged. You’ll need photographs and video, but should also be making physical notes which will tell a story to the people who are covering you.

If you want to start doing business nice and quickly, you will need to get some repairs done, and this can be a challenge in itself. Builders will be very busy during this time, as a lot of people will need their help. If you can’t find professionals in your area to help you quickly enough, it could be worth spending some time looking at people a little further afield. While this might cost a little more, it will minimise the amount of time you can’t work for, lowering the amount you lose when it comes to your profits. While this is a good time to be in construction, it’s hard for businesses to find professionals like this when they are very busy.

Planning For The Future

Finally, as the last area to consider, it’s time to think about what can be learned from an event like this. Once you’ve gone through this process once, it should be much easier to see what needs to be done to keep yourself protected. In a lot of cases, having the support of a team like Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger can be invaluable, giving you the chance to take action against those who have caused the fire, especially if it loses you a lot of money. Of course, though, you can do more than this to get yourself prepared for the future, and you can find some example of the work below.

Along with being able to take action, though, it will also be important that everyone is kept safe in this sort of even, especially with fires becoming more common. One of the best ways to achieve a goal like this is through training. There are loads of companies out there which offer services providing this sort of education to employees, making it very easy to start taking control of how your team will react to this sort of disaster. Of course, you can’t teach people to be calm, but most people will have a much better chance of getting out unharmed if they feel like they know what they need to do.

With all of this in mind, you should be well prepared for the next wildfire which comes your way. Of course, a lot of the ideas in this post can be replicated for a normal fire, even if it was started within the building. This sort of natural event is one which has terrified people for thousands of years. Fire is incredibly difficult to control, easily spreading without firefighters having the chance to intervene. This doesn’t mean that you can’t take steps towards improving your chances, though, especially when you have the resources of a business behind you.

Staff Writer; Latasha Day


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