Hurricane Irma Aftermath: Why Many Small Businesses Never Reopen

The path of destruction from Hurricane Irma ranges from the Caribbean all the way to Georgia. This massive storm devastated businesses and homes in its wake, and has left many reeling from their loss. While the effects of this hurricane are still being evaluated, business owners throughout Florida suffered the brunt of the storm- many of them temporarily closed. In this article, we’ll explore why as many as 40% of businesses never reopen after a disaster. Moving forward, businesses in disaster-prone areas can secure their facilities with a comprehensive FL Commercial Insurance package to achieve some peace of mind.

One of the major factors in businesses failing to reopen after a disaster is lack of preparation and concern. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), almost 40 percent of small businesses never reopen their doors after a disaster. Recent data from a CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey also shows that most small business owners don’t spend too much time thinking about the environment as a critical factor.

However, in central Florida, and throughout the state, these perils are far more common. Therefore, businesses can do a threat test. From weather phenomena to cyber breaches, there are so many potential risks. So, how do you prepare for this? Creating a disaster response plan is the first step.

Business owners will want to factor in all potential hazards when creating their emergency plan. Some disasters, like fire and tornadoes, can happen anywhere. But it’s wise to conduct a risk assessment of your businesses location to see what else could happen. Are you within striking range of a major hurricane? Has there been any historic flooding? If you’re in any sort of metropolitan area, have you considered terrorism? And don’t forget cyber-attacks, says CNBC.

The next step is to run drills. It’s not a waste of time if the worst-case scenario occurs and you know exactly what to do, who to contact, and how to start your recovery process. Include vendors and employees in on the drills to ensure everyone is on the same page. After all, hurricane season comes each year, and the more prepared you are, the more likely you are to reopen.

About Newman Crane & Associates Insurance

Your livelihood is on the line, and after Hurricane Irma, nothing is more apparent. At Newman Crane, we understand the scope of risks that the environment plays in your business, and seek to give you the protections you need to recover. For more information, contact us today at (407) 859-3691. For claims reporting, please check our website at Newman Crane and/or our Facebook page for carrier contact information.

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