In this video, we’re going to be talking about Emergency Management in the workplace.
It’s important that you understand the types of emergencies that are going to likely happen in your workplace. Obviously, fire is the main one that most people think about, but depending on where you were and the type of area that you’re in, there could be a whole raft of other different types of emergencies that are relevant, such as:
- Severe storms
- Medical emergencies
- Bomb threats
Emergency Risk Register:
You need to sit down as a group at some point in time and come up with a list of key things that could actually happen and this’ll be built into an Emergency Risk Register.
On the Emergency Risk Register, you need to include the key hazards and an assessment of the likelihood and consequence of that emergency if it actually occurred. Also, on the register will be a broad summary of your key control measures. The control measures will vary a little bit depending on the particular emergency that is applicable, but may include:
- Emergency personnel
- Emergency equipment
The specific control measures that you need to consider are detailed plans for how your company or organisation will act, if and when the emergency actually occurs. Some of these will be very similar, for example your evacuation plans will be similar for probably different types of emergencies, but some of them will be very different, so your procedure of what you do in a fire will be different than what you do in a flood.
Other things that you’ll need to have in addition to plans will be appropriate personnel. Oftentimes this is called your emergency control organisation or team, and they’re the people like your fire wardens, or evacuation wardens that can co-ordinate the emergency response.
You’ll need to have also things like emergency equipment in place, so this is going to include firefighting equipment, alarms and all the appropriate signage for the workplace as well.
You’ll need to also include emergency training. The training that will be delivered will vary depending on the type of person that is being trained, for example, wardens, especially the chief fire warden will need a much higher level of training than the average staff member. Most of the staff members will just need training in how to evacuate in an emergency and any specific involvement that they have as far as procedures.
The final thing that you need to consider is practice evacuations. Again, this is part of your fire regulations that everyone does periodic practice evacuations and the specific requirement for this will vary depending on where you are but generally its annually that you must practice evacuation.
It’s important that this gets conducted in as realistic as possible circumstances, so you actually generate the alarm and have people evacuate as they would under normal emergency circumstances.
Following your practice evacuation, it is important that you do a full debrief, see what went well, what went poorly, and what we can do to improve our training and procedures and all equipment that might be required.
- You must identify all of the emergencies – I find a lot of organisations are specifically identifying fire but they’re missing a whole bunch of those other ones.
- Pull the identified emergencies into your emergency risk register and assess the risk of each one
- Develop appropriate procedures, have the right personnel, have the right training and the right equipment in place to appropriately manage each of these emergencies.