If you’ve seen the news lately, you know several threats are impacting communities worldwide. Heat Advisories, droughts, and wildfires have become significant concerns even in cities where heat advisories are unheard of. Due to the increase in temperatures, as your trusted partner, we wanted to bring awareness to the challenges businesses face during a drought and offer tips on how to best prepare.
Read below to learn how your business can navigate this challenging time safely and efficiently.
Preparation is Key
Like any other disaster that may impact your community, having a well-thought-out plan for droughts could save your business.
Monitor the weather in your area for sudden heat waves and conservation alerts.
Create and/or review your business continuity plan that details how your company will operate with limited resources and the steps it will take to minimize interruptions.
Consider how these threats may impact the supply chain and raw materials or production costs. Then, seek alternatives or...
While you prepare your business for potential disasters, ensure your home and loved ones are also ready for the unexpected; this includes your pets. During Pet Preparedness Month, Cotton reminds you to keep enough supplies on hand and plan how you’ll keep your pets safe before, during and after a catastrophe. To help you with this process, we’ve listed a few of Ready.gov’s must-have supplies and considerations for you and your family.
MAKE A PLAN
Create an evacuation plan for your pet. Before disaster hits, ensure there’s enough room for them in the car and select a shelter or hotel that allows pets. Making these plans ahead of imminent danger could save you a lot of time during a disaster.
Develop a buddy system. In the event that you are unavailable or unable to evacuate your pet during a disaster, know which neighbors, friends or relatives will evacuate your pet safely. Ensure they know they’ve been designated as your pet’s buddy and know how to access...
Flooding can happen anywhere, and to anyone. It is critical that businesses are prepared for natural disasters with flood insurance and tools that mitigate total loss in emergency situations. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), flooding occurs in over 90 percent of all natural disasters, averaging 17 billion dollars of damage each year.
There are a few simple preparatory steps that have the potential of saving your business from complete closure and financial loss if flooding ever occurs in your area.
Analyze flood maps
One of the simplest ways you can proactively prepare your business for flooding is by analyzing flood maps of your business area. FEMA is the most reliable resource for this information, providing flood maps that are updated regularly. When researching your elevation and calculating risk of flooding, the 100-year flood plain will give insight into the highest potential level of water...more
When your business property is damaged by a fire, the smoke and soot created can be devastating and the impact is often overwhelming. If your property’s sprinkler system was deployed, or if firefighters used water to put the fire out, there is also the potential for water damage to your building’s structure and contents. This includes the entirety of your facility, any paperwork or files, machinery, and technology. Creating a recovery plan after fire damage is critical to getting your business back to normal operations with minimal downtime.
Restore your property from smoke and soot damage
The physical damage that occurs after a fire can range from minor damage to total loss. No matter how large the fire, it is a traumatic situation to find yourself in.
There is often no way of predicting the extent of the damage until a property restoration company can assess your property. After a fire, do not re-enter your business; there is always the potential of structural damage and re-entering poses...more
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) estimates the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season, with the third-highest number of storms on record, to have caused about $70 billion in damages in the United States. Damages from Hurricane Ida alone, which made landfall in Louisiana as a Category 4 storm in August, are estimated to exceed the costs from all the hurricanes in the 2020 season combined.
Hurricanes are causing more damage and rapidly becoming more costly every year. Considering the wind and water damage that hurricanes can cause, taking some basic steps to prepare in advance can help companies minimize the property damage and business disruptions these events can create.
Take protective measures across your commercial property
There are many proactive steps you can take before hurricane season to reduce the potential for property damage. Have storm shutters or plywood on hand to protect doors and windows. Remove tree branches, loose debris, or other items around...more
Molds are a type of fungus that can grow almost anywhere that provides them with moisture, oxygen, and an organic food source. They reproduce using tiny spores that typically can’t be seen without magnification and circulate through the air, whether outside or indoors.
Mold grows especially well in warm and damp conditions; the high humidity of restaurant kitchens makes them particularly susceptible to infestation. With increased public awareness of the possible health implications of mold exposure, restaurants must be extra vigilant to check for and eliminate any mold that may be found in their buildings.
What the effects of mold are if not removed properly
Not only can mold growth create odors in buildings, it has the potential to cause health problems. As reported by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration, mold exposure can trigger health effects. For some people, mold spores can cause a reaction similar to hay fever, such as...more
Saying commercial property owners should worry about water damage is an understatement. Floods, in particular, are among the most common and costly natural disasters in the world. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, the United States accrued $148 billion in damages to residential and commercial properties across 20 climate and weather disasters in 2021.
Even more frightening is what these statistics don’t include, such as non-disaster, water-related events like burst pipes or non-flooding-related heavy rain.
For commercial property owners, there are additional risks beyond water damage alone. Water damage puts a business on hold, causing further loss of revenue, and any untreated or lingering damage like mold can become a hazard for employees, guests, and residents. That’s why it’s imperative that water damage be addressed as swiftly and safely as possible. In the event water or flood damage happens to you, Cotton recommends taking several prudent steps to ensure minimum business disruption.
Just like washing dishes or doing the laundry, having to pick a water damage restoration company can feel like an undesirable chore. But as a business or commercial property owner, it’s imperative having a trusted professional at your side in the case of sudden water damage from natural disasters, inclement weather, or compromised plumbing.
When water is involved, there’s no time to waste. Attempting to fix water damage on your own can actually compound the problem; the more time passes, the threat of mold growth, health hazards, and compromised documents and other materials increases. Only having the most advanced equipment and certified expertise can get your business or property back in working condition.
To help you sort through an overwhelming and sometimes confusing amount of options, here are eight suggestions to help you choose the company that’s best for your needs.
1. Choose companies with credible local references
You wouldn’t hire a babysitter with no experience to watch...more
Soon after St. Patrick’s Day, some of our service areas were impacted by the spring’s unpredictable weather changes. Some businesses saw several inches of rain, others experienced severe tornado damage that halted operations, and others are still being impacted by snow. No matter the damage, it’s not because of luck that many of our FirstAlert! members are already on the road to total recovery - it’s because of our 24-hour site monitoring and priority response.
The benefit of 24-hour site monitoring
Regardless of where your commercial properties are located, chances are they’re exposed to natural threats that could delay production or keep your business from meeting demand. In that case, it helps to have a restoration partner that is always ahead of the storm. Members of Cotton’s FirstAlert! Program benefit from our Business Intelligence Center monitoring their facilities and weather events 24/7. This means that we can help them prepare for potential damages before the storm arrives and...more
Tackle the Rest of this Winter Season & Secure Your Commercial Property with Our Winter Preparedness Checklist
Last year, the 2020–21 North American winter brought over $200 billion in damage across the United States and resulted in the tragic loss of life of almost 300 people, and experts predict many of these trends will continue. With this year’s winter season already well underway, it is essential for everyone from property owners to risk managers and facility directors to stay prepared for any of the threats that the winter weather may hold.
With over 25 years of winter storm recovery experience, our team understands the importance of remaining constantly vigilant throughout the colder months and we know you do too. To aid you in finishing this winter safe & secure, Cotton’s team of winter disaster recovery experts have prepared this helpful checklist to ensure your commercial property is ready to face any winter event: