Proper planning can help prevent many “what ifs,” as well as help save lives and get your business back on track quicker following a natural disaster. With this in mind, Manage the Damage — Preparing for Natural Disasters is the theme for the International Code Council’s Building Safety Month Week Three, May 15-21.
“This past year, our communities have really been tested by weather and other events, struggling to assess their cross-functional resilience,” said ICC Board President Dwayne Garriss, Georgia State Fire Marshal.
“To help address this, the ICC has participated in the formation of the Alliance for National & Community Resilience (ANCR), a collaborative, non-profit organization dedicated to creating the nation’s first whole-community resilience benchmark,” Garriss added. “ANCR and its 27 member organizations intend to give communities a quick, easy and coherent way to assess their strengths and areas for improvement to foster better community resilience.”
Protecting Your Facility
Although you have little control over the occurrence of hazards in your community, mitigation efforts such as building code adoption and enforcement are the strongest strategies jurisdictions can take to protect a community against the effects of natural hazards.
Mitigation through the building codes increases occupant health and safety during a disaster, protects the local tax base, ensures continuity of essential services, and supports more rapid recovery from disasters.
The ICC’s family of codes, also known as the International Codes, cover all aspects of building construction. Make sure they are part of your facility’s emergency preparedness plans.
It’s also important to know what your building’s occupants will do in the event of a natural disaster, and to have a plan in place. Sheltering in place is appropriate when conditions require people to seek protection in their place of employment, or other location, when disaster strikes. Review your facility’s plan regularly. If you make changes that affect the information in your building’s disaster plan, update it immediately.
To access resources and articles on this topic, visit ICC’s Manage the Damage — Preparing for Natural Disasters web page.