Encourage all employees to have a good personal hurricane plan. Keep each employee’s hurricane plan in mind when assigning hurricane preparations and planning the dismissal of the work force before a
storm. Employees who live in evacuation zones or who have children or elderly relatives to assist may need additional time to get ready.

Make sure you have current contact information for each employee. Encourage them to tell you where they plan to ride out the storm.

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Set up a hurricane team with your company with employees assigned to do specific things including:

Monitoring CBS4 throughout the season to watch for storms.

Assigning a team to put up shutters and protect equipment.

Securing and protecting all company records.

Removing debris, equipment, and vehicles.

Informing clients that you are closing early and when you plan to reopen.

Making sure employees have the identification they will need to enter a restricted area after a hurricane.

Physical Plant
Have proper shutters for all openings.

Know if your building is in an evacuation zone. If it is, have a detailed plan for removing vehicles, equipment, and important records.

Review your insurance annually. Know what is covered, and increase coverage as necessary.

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Back up the computer system regularly, and encourage all employees to back up their own files often.

Have a safe, waterproof place for diskettes, paper files, and all other records. In a large company, make arrangements with a branch in another city to maintain copies of computer files and the most critical paper records.

Secure any equipment or outdoor items that could become flying debris.

Have a temporary location available if your building is damaged or it is impossible to get to it immediately after a hurricane. Determine how much of your business you will be able to operate from this alternate site.


Make a laminated wallet-size card with important phone numbers. Give one to each employee.

Set up a special phone number with an answering machine that you can update easily to keep employees informed about the status of company operations and work assignments. If possible, use a number (having an 800 number and a direct dial number is best) in a branch out of town. Usually, long distance service is more reliable than local service immediately after a storm.

Have a designated phone number with an answering machine where employees can leave a brief message after a storm. Designate a person or team to make sure that all employees are accounted for.

Have battery back up for your PBX or multi-line phone system.

Consider phone services that let you forward your calls to other numbers even if your own phone system is out of service.

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For help with your business plan, contact your county Emergency Management Office.