Not all disasters can be prevented, but there are many mitigation strategies that can reduce damage to your business from a disaster. Implementing those strategies before a disaster may make it easier for your business to recover.
Strategies to Consider
- Research applicable fire prevention regulations, national standards and best practices to identify mitigation opportunities and requirements.
- Speak with your insurance agent, broker or underwriter to determine if they provide consultation services to help customize protection for a new or renovated facility. Highly protected facilities may be eligible for reduced insurance premiums.
- Consider selecting a building site that is not subject to flood, storm surge, significant ground shaking from earthquakes or in proximity to hazardous facilities . Building construction should meet applicable building codes that include requirements for fire protection and life safety.
- Strategies to mitigate business disruption include providing uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) and an emergency standby generator for critical equipment. Developing a business continuity plan with recovery strategies is another method of risk mitigation.
Insurance as Financial Mitigation
Purchasing insurance is a way to reduce the financial impact of a business interruption, loss or damage to a facility or equipment. Review your insurance policies with your agents, brokers or directly with your insurers to determine whether your insurance policies adequately cover your potential losses.
Flood insurance coverage for a facility located within a flood zone may be purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program. Earthquake, terrorism and pollution coverage may be purchased separately or as an endorsement to an existing policy.
Business interruption coverage reimburses profits and certain continuing expenses during a business shutdown. Contingent business interruption coverage is available to reimburse losses caused by a supplier failure. Endorsements to standard policies can cover extra expenses such as the additional costs for expedited delivery of replacement machinery following an insured loss.
Risk Mitigation Resources
- Protect Your Property from High Winds Series (FEMA)
- FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets - FM Global
- Standard for the Installation of Lightning Protection Systems – NFPA 780
- Equipment Start-Up, Shutdown & Maintenance, Maintenance Fact Sheets - Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co.
Human-Caused Intentional Acts
- Standard for Security Services in Fire Loss Prevention – NFPA 601
- Guide for Premises Security - NFPA 730
- Standard for the Installation of Electronic Premises Security Systems – NFPA 731
- Workplace Violence—Issues in Response - Federal Bureau of Investigation
- Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings – FEMA 426
- Primer for Design of Commercial Buildings to Mitigate Terrorist Attacks – FEMA 427
- Site and Urban Design for Security: Guidance against Potential Terrorist Attacks – FEMA 430
- Incremental Protection for Existing Commercial Buildings from Terrorists Attack: Providing Protection to People and Buildings – FEMA 459
- Guidance for Filtration and Air-Cleaning Systems to Protect Building Environments from Airborne Chemical, Biological, or Radiological Attacks - U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Computer Security Resource Center - National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Computer Security Division Special Publications (800 Series).
- Information Security Handbook: A Guide for Managers - NIST, SP 800-100
- Risk Management Guide for Information Technology Systems - NIST, SP 800-30
- Generally Accepted Principles and Practices for Securing Information Technology Systems - NIST, SP 800-14
- An Introduction to Computer Security: The NIST Handbook - NIST, SP 800-12
- Standard for the Protection of Information Technology Equipment – NFPA 75