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Crisis Management: Is your building prepared?

As building managers, we are always concerned for the wellbeing and safety of our tenants. But how do you plan for a crisis? Have your tenants practiced an emergency evacuation? Do you have an action plan for a lock-down situation?

 

 

These are some important questions every building manager should ask themselves periodically to prepare for any crisis. BOMA Baltimore is dedicated to helping our members understand these questions and move forward in creating policies to protect tenants. We are now forming our own Security and Emergency Preparedness committee that will help each of our members create action plans for crisis management or supplement existing plans.  We are also working with the city to ensure the necessary communications are in place should a crises situation develop.

 

 

If you have interest in participating on this committee or want to learn more, please contact Jennifer Thornton at headquarters.

 

 

BOMA International has always been involved in developing emergency and security preparedness tactics and best practices for the industry. But after 9/11, the office building industry more than doubled its efforts. The BOMA International website is full of continually updated content including tools for property managers to evaluate security preparedness, create evacuation plans, and perform risk assessments on their properties. Outreach includes conferences, seminars and workshops – all of to which, you as a member, have access.

 

 

BOMA International recommends that building managers take certain security measures to set a foundation for their crisis management strategies.

 

 

“Review current contingency plans and if not already in place, develop and implement procedures for receiving and acting on threat information, alert notification procedures, terrorist incident response procedures, evacuation procedures, bomb threat procedures, hostage and barricade procedures, chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) procedures, consequence and crisis management procedures, accountability procedures, and media procedures. When the aforementioned plans and procedures have been implemented, conduct internal training exercises and invite local emergency responders (fire, rescue, medical and bomb squads) to participate in joint exercises.”

 

 

Suggested security measures for all buildings can be found on the BOMA International site here .

 

 

Security and Emergency Preparedness plans should account for terror attacks as well as natural disaster and disease. Here are some things to consider when creating plans for your building.

 

 

-Before a disaster, establish and confirm communication plans and equipment.

-During a disaster, account and identify your tenants and make sure people are out of harms way.

-After a disaster, make a quick assessment and prioritize your efforts.

 

 

For more information from some of the first respondents to the aftermath of hurricane Katrina, click here.

 

 

Stay tuned as we share more information about this and our other key initiatives throughout the next few months. In the meantime, if you have any questions about how to get involved, email Jennifer Thornton at jthornton@bomabaltimore.org

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