[This article was written by Lizzie Weakley.]
Even when properties have been inspected and maintained according to appropriate due diligence, there is always a possibility of unforeseen problems. Many of these issues are nothing more than an inconvenience or eyesore, but some can be incredibly disruptive or even dangerous. Building owners should develop a comprehensive disaster management strategy for various scenarios so they have a plan and structure in place during emergencies.
Offices located near flood-prone rivers or coastal areas are likely already prepared for the possibility of excessive water damage. However, all workplaces should have some contingencies and preparations in place for when flooding strikes. A burst pipe in the building, damage to the roof during a storm or rogue natural disasters are always a risk. Buildings owners also need to take care to investigate for mold growth throughout the structure after any flooding has occurred.
Vandalism and Theft
Most offices aren’t fully prepared for the possibility of severe vandalism or burglary. Mitigating loss by investing in safes, locks and cameras is a good basic security plan, but these measures aren’t completely effective. Businesses should report these incidents to local authorities as soon as possible and make sure that the premises are safe for continued use. Any point of entry should be addressed to prevent future break-ins.
Changes in Soil Composition
Changes in the soil around the base of the building can have devastating consequences on the structure itself. Erosion and changes in the chemical or physical composition of the soil can put buildings of any size at risk. Appropriate environmental engineering solutions depend on the exact nature of the problem, but there are several types of soil stabilization techniques available to prevent further damage.
Building Compliance Issues
Whether a business issued the construction of a building or simply purchased an existing one, there is always a risk of running into compliance issues. City, county and state governments throughout the United States enforce a variety of building codes that cover everything from electrical wiring to stair height. Office owners should verify all aspects of the building’s compliance with current regulations before moving employees and equipment.
There are hundreds of potential challenges that can arise when managing an active office building. That’s why businesses should create a comprehensive and flexible crisis management plan that they can adapt to any emergency situation that arises. Training employees, preparing equipment and establishing back-up plans for key assets can cut down on losses when disaster does strike.
Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and walks in the park with her three-year-old husky, Snowball.