Everyone knows tornadoes are risky. Thanks to Hollywood, we know that tornadoes can be dangerous, even deadly.
At their least worrisome, an EF0 tornado can cause mild damage to outbuildings and small sheds, and take shingles off of roofs. At the other end of the Fujita scale, an EF5 tornado can have winds 200-300 mph and decimate entire small towns, like Greensburg, Kansas. While there is typically a "tornado season," which, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is from March through July in the United States, tornadoes have been recorded in every month, and in every state.
That's a lot of tornadoes to leave to chance.
In our homes, many of us benefit from residential tornado shelters, basements, or at the very least, we have an action plan for severe weather. (And if you don't, what are you waiting for?) We typically think of tornadoes as something that we need to be aware of and protect ourselves from when we're at home. The fact is, tornadoes can strike at any time of day, even during the hours we are at work. We can learn from incidents like the Amazon warehouse collapse in Edwardsville, Illinois, when a category EF3 tornado came through and workers took shelter in a bathroom because they didn't know where to go.
As a business owner, it's important to recognize that tornadoes pose a threat to your employees and customers.
Financial loss and legal liability are two very real concerns when it comes to tornadoes, so it’s important to be proactive in protecting against these risks. If you have you questions about commercial tornado shelters, experts (like those at Survive-A-Storm) most likely have answers.
In addition to the obvious benefit of saving lives, a good commercial tornado shelter and a severe weather plan also add the benefit of peace of mind for your employees. By having a tornado plan in place, you can provide your employees with the reassurance that they are safe and that their well-being is a top priority for the company.
There are several types of commercial tornado shelters to choose from, each with its own pros and cons. There are above-ground and underground shelters and a bevy of options for each, like ventilation, seating, and more. You will want to decide if you will have one large shelter in one location or several smaller shelters in separate areas. It’s best to talk to professionals about your specific needs, the number of people who will occupy the tornado shelter, and where it will be placed. From there, you can make an educated decision about what’s best for you.
No matter which type of shelter you choose, it's important to ensure that it meets all relevant building codes, as well as industry standards for tornado shelters, like those from the National Storm Shelter Association. It should also be placed in an easily accessible area that all employees are aware of. You should have a clear plan in place for communicating with employees during a tornado. All employees should know where they are to go in the event of a storm and when to take shelter.
Overall, the importance of having a plan for tornadoes in the workplace cannot be overstated. By procuring a commercial tornado shelter and creating a clear plan for emergency situations, you can protect the lives of your employees and customers, as well as minimize financial loss and legal liability. Don't wait until it's too late – start planning now to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone at your workplace. Get in touch with Survive-A-Storm today.