Monday, December 23, 2013

Emergency Plans

Be Prepared!
Do you have an Emergency Plan at work and at home?  Winter is here; extreme cold weather and winter storms kill more Canadians than tornadoes, lightning, floods, hurricanes and heat waves combined! The cold and winter storms can disrupt your power supply, make travel dangerous, and can pose other risks to your personal safety. 
Emergency plans should include a pandemic or influenza plan to address workplace illness, staff shortages and the health and wellness of your workers and your families.
At home you should stock up on supplies for flu and cold season; put  a safety kit in your car that includes a blanket and candles.
You should be prepared in your home and workplace for emergencies.  Emergency Management Ontario provides numerous resources to assist you with your workplace Emergency Management Programs.  The following checklist will assist you in the development of an Emergency Plan for the workplace: 
1.       Assess the Hazards in your workplace
2.       Learn how to be informed of an emergency
3.       Develop a workplace emergency plan
4.       Develop a Workplace Communications Plan
5.       Ensure you have staff trained in First Aid/CPR
6.       Prepare a Workplace Emergency Survival Kit
7.       Put your Emergency Plan into Action – Practice and Maintain
8.       Develop an Evacuation Plan and Practice it
9.       Learn how to “Shelter-in-Place” – remaining indoors in your place of work
10.   Determine if there is anyone with Special Needs
a.       Develop specific Emergency Plans for Employees with special needs (disabilities) (this is in compliance with the AODA Emergency Management criteria under the Employment Standard and is legislated to be complied with by January 1, 2012)
11.   Develop a plan for the evacuation and emergency management of your customers (as legislated under the AODA – General Guidelines) by January 1, 2012
12.   Develop an Influenza/Pandemic Plan in your workplace.

For your home, be prepared for an emergency such as a power outage, snow days where you are snowed in, medical emergencies, special needs etc.  Assess your home to determine your needs:
1.       What are some of the hazards in your community?  How might they affect you in your home?
2.       Learn where to get information from about an emergency
3.       Develop your family emergency plan
4.       Prepare an emergency survival kit for your  home and your  vehicles
5.       Have a Pet Smart Emergency Plan
6.       Practice and update your plan regularly
7.       Learn how to evacuate your home in an emergency
8.       Learn how to “Shelter-in-Place” – remaining indoors in your home
9.       Consider special needs members of your family may have and develop plans with them in mind.
10.   Prepare for influenza/pandemics and other medical emergencies

With the holidays approaching, winter weather on the horizon and travel to family and friends, it is important to plan ahead for unforeseen emergencies.  Don’t be caught out in the cold – plan for the unexpected.  Be Safe!  Happy Holidays!

Lynne Bard, BA (Honours), C.H.R.P., CES
Human Resources, Safety & Risk Management Experts
Taking the Complexity out of Compliance
Beyond Rewards Inc.
Phone: 519-821-7440
Cell: 519-830-7480

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