READING, Pa., August 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Around the world, natural disasters are on the rise. Rising temperatures are setting the stage for more droughts, wildfires, floods and other weather emergencies. In 2021, United States natural disasters have created more than $145 billion in economic damages, three times the amount initially estimated by the The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The Federal Emergency Management Association estimates that around 25% of businesses do not reopen after suffering a weather-related disaster. Without a plan in place, a weather emergency resulting in a power outage, flood, or property damage can be enough to force a business or business to shut down permanently.
To better protect businesses and their employees, emergency preparedness experts from Rentokil North America and their family brands, Steritech and Ambius, shared three things to incorporate into a weather-related risk mitigation plan. Business owners and operators can use these tips to make a plan and better protect their employees, customers and business.
First tip: be prepared for power outages
Power outages can happen anytime, anywhere. A nearby accident can cause power lines to break and lead to a local outage. Heavy rain, high winds, or extreme temperatures from severe storms can also cause a regional or widespread outage. Business owners may not be able to prevent a power outage, but planning ahead and incorporating step-by-step instructions for unique business needs can help prevent product loss at temperature. controlled.
Perform a thorough facility walkthrough and note any temperature-controlled products or power-dependent vulnerabilities. Include clear instructions for handling these products in the event of a power outage and ensure resources are readily and readily available.
Consider having a paper log handy to manually monitor and document product and food temperatures as long as it is safe to remain in the building or the power outage is confirmed to be brief. Avoid opening cold room and cold room doors as much as possible to keep items cool. A freezer in good condition can maintain its temperature for up to 24 hours if left unopened.
“When a power outage affects temperature-controlled products, discard any foods that may have been in the cooling or warming process,” advised Paula HeraldTechnical consultant at Steritech. “Don’t take chances trying to cool hot food; throw it away in the interest of food safety.”
Second tip: Solve air quality problems
Flash floods and wildfires continue to spread United States releasing toxins, bacteria, smoke and other harmful pathogens into the air. These contaminants infect the air and seep into floors, walls and furniture, persisting long after the flood or fire is over. Exposure to these pollutants can be very dangerous for people and can lead to heart and lung problems, eye and skin irritation, and a number of other health issues.
Do not enter a space that has been affected by flooding or fire without first receiving approval from health and safety officials. Once the area is deemed safe, assess any structural damage, look for signs of smoke or mold damage, and discard anything that cannot be washed, rinsed, and sanitized, such as furniture and carpets. Air decontamination units can be used to help remove remaining airborne toxins, gases, and pollutants.
“The increased frequency of natural disasters has a significant impact on air quality,” said Matt HayasProduct and Innovation Director at Ambius. “Business owners can solve indoor air quality issues by investing in specialized air decontamination units designed to effectively remove 99.9999% of airborne pollutants before, during and after extreme weather conditions. “
Tip 3: Remove destruction and debris
Natural disasters can leave behind damaged roofs, broken windows, fallen trees, and other destruction and debris. Structural damage and piled up debris are not only safety hazards, they can also create the perfect haven for rodents, insects, birds and other pests looking to build a new home.
Once the weather emergency has passed, it is important to carry out a thorough inspection of the property. Identify all open access points and move fallen trees and debris as far away from the building as possible.
“A minimum distance of 25 feet is recommended to prevent pests from entering the building,” said Nancy Troyano at Rentokil. “Rodents can fit through holes as small as a quarter inch, so a thorough inspection of the building, before and after a storm, is essential.”
Dealing with the aftermath of a weather-related disaster can be overwhelming and costly. A pre-arranged risk mitigation plan can save businesses up to $13 by 1 dollar invested (National Institute of Building Sciences). As climate change continues to progress, the threat of weather emergencies may soon become a reality for many people across the country. Be proactive and make a plan before disaster strikes. Incorporate these tips into a crisis plan to better protect the businesses, properties and people they serve.
For more information on emergency preparedness advice and the Rentokil family of brands, please visit rentokil.com/us.
For over 90 years, Rentokil has been a global pest control expert. With an integrated approach to pest control, Rentokil’s network of experts delivers superior protection and reliable solutions, pushing the boundaries of innovation and harnessing new technologies to create pest-free environments.
Rentokil is part of Rentokil North America, which provides commercial and residential pest control products to customers in United States and Canada. Complete, digital pest control solutions include general pest control, inspections and services for rodents, mosquitoes, birds, termites and bed bugs, vegetation management and bird management.
In addition, Rentokil North America operates business services companies, including Ambius, which specializes in air purification, hand and surface hygiene, and botanicals and fragrance services; Steritech, offering food security and operations assessments; SOLitude Lake Management, which offers solutions for lakes and ponds; and Vector Disease Control International, which provides governments and municipalities with mosquito control services.