According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), flooding is the most frequent natural disaster in the United States. It can happen anywhere and at any point in the year, whether it is from excessive ice melting, broken dams, or heavy rain. Therefore, it is incredibly important for citizens to prepare for flood conditions. Companies should communicate concerns, create plans, and train employees on how to respond in emergency situations.
How Climate Change Affects Flood Frequency
Unfortunately, climate change is impacting the environment and frequency of natural disasters. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Americans have already seen a 20 percent increase in heavy downpours over the last 50 years. Therefore, it is important for citizens to prepare for more frequent downpours, as the climate continues to change.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), flooding occurs more frequently along the United States coastline, including the east coast. This is particularly concerning because New Jersey faces a higher risk of flooding than other states. The EPA also states that Atlantic City suffers flooding 10 times more often than it did in the 1950’s. These statistics prove how flood preparation, proper evacuation plans, and safety tips can save lives.
Preparing for a Flood in the Workplace
According to OSHA, employers are responsible for the safety of their employees. This includes preparing employees for dangerous conditions, such as natural disasters. One way to accomplish this is to provide a set of safety tips to help employees stay calm during floods and keep themselves and others safe. These include:
- Monitoring weather conditions by radio or television
- Avoiding travel in these conditions, especially on bridges
- Wearing protective clothing, such as rubber boots, to avoid electrical injuries
- Practicing caution around slippery surfaces
- Avoiding flooded rooms
- Going to the building’s highest level, if water is rising
- Turning off gas, electric, and water, unless you are standing in water
- Following evacuation procedures
Employers should also provide a thorough evacuation plan for emergency situations. This plan should be communicated to all employees and rehearsed every few months. Consistent rehearsal of evacuation plans keeps employees confident on how to respond during natural disasters. Evacuation plan criteria includes:
- Stating the conditions that activate the emergency evacuation plan
- Stating the duties of each employee, and who oversees certain safety functions
- Providing multiple exit routes
- Providing employees with essential safety equipment
Cherry Hill Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Advocate for Victims of Workplace Injuries
If you or someone you know suffered an injury while on the job, please consider contacting the services of a Cherry Hill Workers’ Compensation lawyer at DiTomaso Law. Our lawyers are equipped with experience that help our clients obtain the compensation they deserve. Contact us online or call us at 856-414-0010 for a free consultation today. Located in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, we proudly serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Cherry Hill, Mt. Holly, and Camden County.