Prepare for an emergency

In the event of a crisis, you may not receive advance warning to evacuate. You may even be ordered to evacuate by local authorities (e.g. the police). Being prepared with an evacuation procedure and team in place avoids confusion and possible injury during an emergency situation.

As well as an evacuation procedure you should include an emergency kit (go-kit) in your incident response plan and develop an incident response checklist so that you and your staff know what to do in an emergency.

Preparing an emergency kit (go-kit)

Having an emergency kit (go-kit) available can help keep your business running in a different location. Keep your emergency kit where you can quickly and easily retrieve it. Ideally, you should store your kit safely and securely off-site in case your premises are destroyed or unreachable in a crisis.

Record in your incident response plan the contents of your emergency kit and make sure you keep it up to date.

Learn more about preparing an emergency kit.

Emergency checklists

To help you prepare for an emergency, review the following disaster checklists:

You can also find information on pandemic risk management.

Prepare evacuation procedures

Making sure you have evacuation procedures will ensure you are prepared in advance should a crisis occur. Consider in advance who will take control in an emergency and make sure that staff understand the evacuation procedures and their responsibilities.

Read more about evacuating your business.

Review your processes and procedures

After an incident, it's important that you take time to reflect on your action and response. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • How can your management of the incident be improved for next time?
  • Were your staff aware of and able to deliver their role?
  • Are there better ways of responding?

A debriefing session with key staff members to discuss the incident, how you responded to it and what can be learned from it can support continual improvement of your emergency processes and procedures.

Also consider...