Our thoughts are with those operators and vendors on the East Coast who are threatened by Hurricane Sandy. Please be safe. If you are able, can you share with the SST community what you are doing at your facilities to prepare for the storm? What are emergency personnel telling you regarding evacuation and what to expect in your area?
For the entire group, what disaster-preparation and recovery plans do you have in place at your facilities in the advent of a hurricane, tornado, earthquake or other emergency situation?
Community Manager, Self-Storage Talk
Manager, Inside Self-Storage Store
Online Content Editor, Business Solutions Network
tjones at vpico dot com
480-990-1101, ext. 1261
Severe weather preparedness procedure and checklist contains steps to be taken when notified that severe weather is on the horizon. Basically it lists a thorough inspection procedure for the facility to indentify any areas requiring attention such as roofs, gutters, storm drains, loose items, and parked vehicles/RV/boats. When it became evident that the current tropical storm would be causing problems here I completed the inspection and commenced completing steps to minimize damage. I cleaned all roof gutters of debris to prevent backups into the buildings. The entire facility was cleared of any leaves, loose objects (trash cans, pallets, etc.) that would or could cause problems. Emergency lighting was double checked to ensure functionality if needed. Personal flashlights were readied with fresh batteries and extras on hand(facility does not have any). Fuel tanks on my personal vehicle and the rental truck were topped off and extra gas purchased in case power was lost or I had to evacuate. (I have a generator but facility does not). Propane and grill readied in the event of power loss. Golf cart batteries charged each night as long as power is available. Chain saw (mine) readied for use if needed. Extra bottled water and ice purchased in the event of power loss. During the storm I make rounds of the facility to make sure gutters and drains are clear and to make sure nothing has come loose or trees have not fallen. Not advisable if you're not physically able or equipped to do so. High winds and rain make walking treacherous. Cell phone batteries should be kept charged throughout the storm. Review manual opening of gates and garage doors in case of power loss. I usually open the main gate during office hours and only put it back on keypad operation after closing the office.
Things went well here in central Virginia. I know the people up north wish they could say the same. The loss of life is especially saddening, like my grandpa always said, "you can fix anything broken", wish we could do the same for the families who lost loved ones.