Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy - Disaster Recovery Planning
Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy - Disaster Recovery Planning - By George Mentz JD MBA
As a business person affected by Hurricane Katrina, there are many lessons learned that most people around the world discover during their lifetimes. The first is that survival is a priority, and you must take care of yourself and family first. If you endure a national disaster, you can always rise up again if you work hard.
The second lesson is that if you play your cards right, you can be ahead of the game. There are many ways to plan including: home preparedness, equipment, business strategy, insurance, contingency plans, risk management, and more. Here are some examples:
Information Technology and the Internet - If you have computers, maybe you should back them up. There are various companies that do this such as Carbonite. (NASDAQ: CARB) Other services allow for you to have backup servers of files at other locations. Companies who survived 9-11 attacks and Hurricane Katrina were ahead of the competition in this regard. Further, we must all be weary of cyber attack also and virus software such as Symantec is essential. (NASDAQ: SYMC)
Risk Management and Insurance - Some companies carry business interruption insurance. However, flood insurance is also good because most insurance policies do not cover "rising water" from flood. The government sells affordable flood insurance to many Americans, but you must buy a contract well before a storm is viable to have coverage in force. Companies such as: Met Life or Lincoln Financial and others provide this service. (NYSE: MET) or (NYSE: LNC)
Equipment and Power - Many people keep back up data, external hard drives, auxiliary power, generators, water proof safes and so forth. Companies such as SeaGate (NASDAQ: STX) and Active Power (NASDAQ: ACPW) are in this business.
Communications, Phone and Email - Maintaining communications after a storm is key. Both with your customers and your employees. Many firms have employees that can work from anywhere as long as they have access to servers and technology. Keep in mind that those whose cell towers are still up become the default provider after a disaster. Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) & AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) Additionally, social or business networks such as Linkedin.com (NYSE: LNKD) or Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) are extremely useful for group communications, news distribution to groups, and staying in touch using computers and phones with data.
Disaster and Hurricane Planning? - If you are searching for information to plan for contingencies, then search for "Disaster Recovery Plan". While many people do know about risk, risk management is not a typical part of our education in college or in the workplace. Thus, each employee or department or family member should have a role to play in emergencies. If you need help, then talk to a good management consulting firm such as Accenture Plc (NYSE: ACN)
Common Sense Action. - Putting items such as family photos, personal computers or other collectibles in a safe place or on the second floor of the home if possible. Gas up the cars, bring your medicine, secure your property, have credit cards with you, book hotels out of town early, and evacuate sooner rather than later.
News and Current Events: Be prepared and stay aware. Some of the companies such as weather.com and www.weatherunderground.com provide invaluable information both before and after an event. Thus, try to remain knowledgeable about what to do and what to avoid.
Damages Claims and Quantum - While most insurance companies deal in good faith, companies are not eager to pay out claims unless well substantiated. If your property is damaged, document it. Make a film of the property before and after, take pictures, and hire a consultant after the event to formulate the claims if necessary.
Other Disaster Variables: - While many people do not worry about catastrophic events, these problems pop up when you least expect it. The earthquakes of the early 1990s in California, the recent fires in Colorado, record size tornados in the southeast, the nuclear reactor issues in Japan, and then there is always flooding, blizzards, draughts. or even terrorism.
With New York, Baltimore and many other major Eastern seaboard cities only 30-40 feet above sea level while Miami and New Orleans are only at sea level, all families and business people should think carefully when planning for risk management or catastrophic events. While the federal government has a role to play in these incidents, Hurricane Katrina is a lesson that the: city, state and local officials who are nearby must have a plan to assist in helping the: impaired, elderly or disabled local residents as soon as possible with food, water, or medicine. Unfortunately, when an event such as Katrina devastates a city such as New Orleans, a survival of the fittest situation generally arises. In closing, we all empathize with anyone dealing with a disaster situation, and I hope this information is useful to the readers and investors.
About the Author: Dr. George Mentz is a world recognized consultant and award winning professor who has authored several revolutionary books. Prof. Mentz, an international lawyer, has been a keynote speaker globally in Asia, Arabia, USA, Mexico, Switzerland, and in the West Indies. Mentz can be contacted for speaking engagements at www.gmentz.com or www.managementconsultant.us or www.selfhelpbook.org
*No tax, insurance, investment or legal advice provided herein. Please consult with a licensed professional in your jurisdiction before making any important financial or legal decision.