When the lights go out, most people curse and start searching for candles and matches. But the effects of a power outage often extend beyond inconvenience. In fact, longer outages can take a bite out of your business’s revenue and even put your family at risk.
Most businesses need power to keep their doors open. Doing without it, even for a few hours, is simply not an option. A 2013 report from the US Department of Energy showed that 679 serious power outages occurred between 2003 and 2012 due to severe weather – and cost the national economy, on average, between $18 billion and $33 billion.
And the financial toll is only the beginning. Picture a food-processing plant where a sudden, significant outage can spoil mass amounts of produce. Standby emergency power systems are designed for exactly this kind of eventuality, kicking in as the grid fails to keep your business in operation and to help mitigate your losses.
But simply having a temporary power supply on site is not enough to ensure that it is ready to go in the event of an emergency. In fact, how your business copes during an outage has a lot to do with the steps and measures you put in place before it all goes dark.
Here’s how to prepare your business for the next big power outage, long before the storm rolls in.
1. Make a Map to the Meter Room
Your meter room is of critical importance during an outage, and your employees will have to be able to find it, and access the inside, in the dark. An emergency lighting system will help them do that while flashlights (with batteries) make for a useful failsafe. It is also crucial that you or the manager on duty knows where to find your building’s fuses, their ratings, and spares in case any are blown when the power comes back on.
2. Make a List of Your Essential Equipment
Businesses rely on appliances that simply cannot run on emergency power. When the power goes out, non-essential systems will need to be identified quickly and shut down to avoid exhausting your temporary power equipment and creating an unstable electrical environment, then reset as power is restored. Essential systems include lines of communication, security and fire control, and you will need to speak to those service providers to properly understand how these are affected by an outage.
3. Make a Plan for Your Employees to Follow
A power outage is confusing at the best of times, but a well thought out, easy-to-follow plan of action will help your staff do the right thing at the right time. The responsibility for creating a preparedness plan rests on the business owner. Your personnel will need an up-to-date list of emergency contacts and information on where to locate all emergency power system equipment and how to operate it safely. Without a comprehensive plan, your workforce has little chance of getting your business through this tough time in one piece, and their failure to do so will rest on you alone.
If you’d like to rent or buy emergency power equipment in San Francisco, call Allied Rental Co. today at 415-644-5792.