To promote a safe work environment for all employees, OSHA and NOAA are working together on a public education effort aimed at improving the way people prepare for and respond to severe weather. You can review their checklists and resources pages for full details.
Taking precautions in advance of the storms, such as developing an emergency plan, learning the warning signs, and monitoring watches and warnings, can help you stay safe if a weather emergency occurs in your area. However, after a few months of calmer weather, your workplace safe space may not have been top of mind. It is important to continually train and practice safety routines with staff and keep your emergency areas up-to-date.
After the massive storm system occurred over the weekend that caused damage from Texas to Mississippi, and more severe weather expected shortly, you should be making sure that your workplace safe space is ready for the season.
The National Weather Service suggests the following reminders to help you service your safe areas:
- If you store important data in your safe area, run a new backup with fresh information.
- Check and replace batteries in your weather radio, flashlights and other devices in your safety kit.
- Check your disaster supplies kits, maintain fresh food and water, etc. Remember that your disaster supplies kit could also be critical in other types of disasters as well.
- Sanitize any helmets, pillows, blankets, sleeping bags or other items that would be used by individuals.
Unfortunately, there are no safety rules that will keep you safe 100% of the time. The key is planning - knowing what you need to do to be safe before severe weather threatens.
Check out Expecting the Unexpected for more ideas on proactive approaches to your building maintenance.