1948 years ago in AD 63 an earthquake in southern Italy by the gulf of Naples seriously damaged the ancient city of Pompeii causing an undetermined number of deaths and spread out destruction, but the locals went to work rebuilding in the same spot until they were buried by the eruption of the Vesuvius volcano 16 years later in AD 79.
Galveston TX Hurricanes
Average Brushed or hit every 2.94 years Average Direct hit every 8.63 years
The Great Storm of 1900 - Sep 8th 1900 - Pop: 42,000 residents Category 4 @ 135 mph -Great loss of life between 6,000 and 12,000 individuals – officially 8,000
The 1915 Storm, August 17th, Category 4 @ 135 mph 42 people dead in the Galveston area
$60 - 1915 million dollars in damage
Ike Sep 13th 2008 - The third most destructive hurricane to ever make landfall in the United States Final landfall in Galveston Texas as a strong cat 2 with cat 5 equivalent storm surge winds extended 120 miles from the center.
Blamed for at least 195 deaths – 74 in Haiti and 112 in the USA 300 still missing. - Damages estimated at 24 billion (2008) US Dollars
Resulted in the largest evacuation in the state of Texas history and the largest search and rescue operation in US history
Chernobyl, An Experiment Gone Wrong
On Saturday, April 26th, 1986 at 1:23 am, one of the reactors at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant exploded. Ironically, the experiment consisted in testing how the power plant would respond in the event of an accident. The operators at the plant wanted to bring down the power output of the reactor to 25%, but over-confidence, poor training and poor knowledge of how a reactor works caused them to overdo it, and they ended up bringing down the power output to 1%. When they then tried to bring it up to 25%, the reactor overheated and exploded causing the worst nuclear accident in history.
Business Continuity: Ready or Not, The Swine Flu is Here
Posted on Thursday, April 30 @ 16:39:38 PDT by editor
All planning efforts are about to prove of great value.
Reports are emerging at a very fast pace about the swine influenza infecting large populations and killing some people in Mexico and the United States, spreading fast into Europe, New Zealand and the Middle East raising grave concerns across the world.
The World Health Organization (WHO) raised the pandemic alert to phase 5 on Wednesday April 29, signifying a sharp increase in the risk of a global flu epidemic. A phase 6 would be the alert to a full-blown pandemic.
What does the phase 5 pandemic alert mean for your business?
A phase 5 alert is a strong signal that a pandemic is imminent and that the time to finalize your organization’s business continuity (BCP) and communication plan is over.
If you haven’t done so, the time to implement and activate your plan is Now? All your planning efforts, tabletops exercises and months of preparation, meetings, testing and refining are about to prove of great value.
The Unites States Government has declared a public health emergency in the United States. The Center for Decease Control (CDC)’s response goals are to reduce transmission and illness severity, and provide information to help health care providers, public health officials and the public address the challenges posed by this emergency.
CDC’s Division of the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) continues to send antiviral drugs, personal protective equipment, and respiratory protection devices to all 50 states and U.S. territories to help them respond to the outbreak.
If at this juncture you don’t have a plan it will be very difficult to prepare one on a short notice but if you move quickly to do as much as you can, you could avert a catastrophe to your business.
Talk to your People
Though the outbreak has not reached pandemic proportions, we recommend that every company develop/update their “Pandemic BCP” involving all co-workers and to consider the high possibility of employees being absent during the emergency.
Provide for your employees well-being and develop ways to communicate with them before, during and after the emergency.
Detail how your organization plans to communicate with local authorities, customers and others during and after the emergency.
Practice what you intend to do during the emergency
In addition to educating employees on proper hygiene practices, below are some of the recommended topics to identify and document in your pandemic plans:
• Identify employees who are cross-trained in various disciplines
• Evaluate alternative workforce options, e.g., retired employees, etc.
• Identify the core functions that are critical to continuing business
• Discuss individual responsibilities and how each would react to emergency scenarios
• Identify succession plans for key-employees
• Identify staff who have the capability to work-at-home
• Contact your suppliers to develop interruption strategies
• Review HR policies and procedures that would be used during a pandemic
• Promote Family and Individual Preparedness
The U.S. government’s plan in the event of a declared pandemic is to mandate that all meeting places, including schools, libraries and day care centers be closed.
Organizations of all sizes would benefit from providing the capability and necessary requirements to allow employees to work from home where it is possible as a strategy to contain the risk of exposure and minimize the impact to the organization.
Allowing employees to work from home has other benefits including increased productivity, fewer sick days, reduced facility costs and reducing commuting to and from work.
If individuals and families are prepared, your company and your co-workers are better positioned in an emergency situation.