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How SMEs can prepare for significant bushfire season

Small businesses are being urged to prepare for what is anticipated to be the most significant bushfire season since the 2019-20 Black Summer fires.

Bushfires can harm your business in many ways, even if you are not in the fire zone, such as from road closures or electricity outages.

Preparing your business to withstand a bushfire or other natural disaster is vital for every business owner. Having a tailored plan to deal with hazards could be the difference between being out of action for a few days or not re-opening at all.

The Commissioner’s four Get Ready for Disasters guides help you prepare your business so you can minimise the impact on your operations and get back to business sooner.

If you don’t know the answers to these questions, our Get Ready for Disasters guides can help:

  • Do your staff know what to do in an emergency?
  • Would you know who to contact and where to get help and information?
  • What would happen to your data in an emergency?
  • Do you have a plan for how you would move stock and equipment?
  • Do you have an alternative location if you had to set up business somewhere else?
  • Would you be able to locate key documents, such as your insurance policy?

Chris Lamont, the Small Business Commissioner of NSW says “Unfortunately, it looks like a potentially bad bushfire season this Summer, with an El Nino climate pattern recently being declared. I urge every small business to think about the risks and prepare for your business to possibly be impacted. Disasters come in all shapes and forms and even if you think you won’t be affected by bushfires, it simply makes good business sense to understand the risks to your particular operation and have an emergency plan. Something as simple as having a backup of your data, or an alternative place to store perishable inventory could determine whether your business survives.”

The Commission has developed four guides to help you identify the risks to your business from disruption and disaster, build a tailored plan to manage the risks and help you deal with the aftermath, including managing insurance claims. Download them here.


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