Posts Tagged ‘preparedness’

Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Disaster Preparedness Mobile App

Posted on: June 24th, 2016 by Jessica Unger | AFR, Miami, FL

The SBDC at Florida International University (FIU), in partnership with USAID and FIU’s Extreme Events Institute, has developed a disaster-preparedness mobile app that allows business owners to better prepare their companies for disasters and to jump start operations post-event. The app includes customizable checklists, disaster simulations and assessments to help entrepreneurs identify risks to their business.


Other features include:

  • Free and available in both English and Spanish.
  • Customizable assessments to determine all risks to the business, along with ways to mitigate these risks
  • Table-top exercises to simulate a disaster and test the ability of a business to respond.
  • Disaster checklists on insurance, business operations, emergency response, and developing supply kits.
  • Step-by-step assistance with developing a business continuity plan and emergency response plan.
  • Templates for employee emergency contact sheets, credentialing letters, and post-disaster decision making charts.
  • Helpful checklists on avoiding contractor fraud, utilizing social media post-disaster, and tips on crisis communications.
  • Additional resources on cyber security information.
  • Monitor and save progress in completing each requirement in the different phases of “Prepare,” “Respond” and “Recover”


Below are the links to download the app from both the iOS and Google Play Stores.

Google Play Link:

Apple App Store:

There are also two demo videos (in English and Spanish) on YouTube:



Southeast Florida Art and Cultural Community Preparedness Survey

Posted on: September 30th, 2015 by Jessica Unger | Miami, FL

AFR Miami distributed a survey to members of the art and cultural community in southeast Florida to learn more about their preparedness level and needs. You can view the survey results here.

NOAA: Below-normal Atlantic Hurricane Season is likely this year

Posted on: May 27th, 2015 by Jessica Unger | SHEP

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center says the 2015 Atlantic hurricane season will likely be below normal, but that’s no reason to believe coastal areas will have it easy.

For the hurricane season, which officially runs from June 1 – November 30, NOAA is predicting a 70% likelihood of 6 to 11 named storms (with winds 39 mph or higher), of which 3 to 6 could become hurricanes (with winds of 74 mph or higher), including 0 to 2 major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher, with winds of 111 mph or higher).

The outlook calls for a 70% chance of a below-normal Atlantic hurricane season, a 20% chance of a near-normal season, and a 10% chance of an above-normal season. The seasonal average for the Atlantic is 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 3 major hurricanes. The NOAA outlook includes Tropical Storm Ana, which formed earlier this month. Pre-season development is not an indicator of the overall season.

NOAA also issued its outlook for the Eastern Pacific and Central Pacific basins. For the Eastern Pacific hurricane basin, NOAA’s 2015 outlook is for a 70% chance of an above-normal hurricane season. That outlook calls for a 70% probability of 15–22 named storms, of which 7–12 are expected to become hurricanes, including 5–8 major hurricanes. For the Central Pacific hurricane basin, NOAA’s outlook is for a 70% chance of an above-normal season with 5–8 tropical cyclones likely.

“It only takes one hurricane or tropical storm making landfall in your community to significantly disrupt your life,” said FEMA Deputy Administrator Joseph Nimmich. “Everyone should take action now to prepare themselves and their families for hurricanes and powerful storms. Develop a family communications plan, build an emergency supply kit for your home, and take time to learn evacuation routes for your area. Knowing what to do ahead of time can literally save your life and help you bounce back stronger and faster should disaster strike in your area.”

With the hurricane season officially starting next week, NOAA offers hurricane preparedness tips, along with video and audio public service announcements at

Click here for the full article.

Business Continuity Training

Posted on: September 5th, 2014 by Jessica Unger | SHEP

Post by Howard Pierpont, International Association for Disaster Preparedness and Response

Disasters happen all the time. The Federal government declares on average one disaster per week. The reality is most disasters do not have national focus. Often an issue can be localized to a community, a neighborhood, or a single facility. Every disaster is personal when it occurs inside your organization. A ruptured pipe, overflowing faucet, wide temperature fluctuations, and external factors can impact the organization.

Recently, I was invited to participate in a day-long, interactive workshop in Caguas, Puerto Rico, to teach how to successfully engage small businesses so they are better prepared for future disasters and crises. The hands-on workshop covered the basics of how to deliver business continuity training to the local community. The audience included commercial as well as not-for-profit organizations.

I invite you to review the presentations included here.

Additional websites with great reference material include:
Open For Business
US Small Business Administration (SBA), which also act as one of the financial clearinghouses for FEMA
Prepare My, a sponsored website from the SBA
The Ready Rating program from the American Red Cross
Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, funded by insurance companies
The Voluntary Private Sector Preparedness Program – PS-Prep™ & Small Business Preparedness (last updated 8/6/2014)
FEMA Program Resources (last updated 8/7/2014)

Feel free to contact me with any questions you might have.

Howard Pierpont
Board Chair, DERA, International Association for Disaster Preparedness and Response

AFR NYC Co-sponsors Event at UN

Posted on: July 25th, 2014 by Jessica Unger | AFR, New York City, NY

On September 23, 2014, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will convene world leaders for a Climate Change Summit at UN Headquarters. In recognition of that event, AFR NYC, METRO, and the United Nations are co-sponsoring a related event on September 11 that addresses climate change and local preparedness by the library, archives, and museum communities in light of Superstorm Sandy. For more information and to register for the September 11 event, click here.

The Wolfsonian Hosts Disaster Preparedness Workshop

Posted on: July 21st, 2014 by Jessica Unger | Miami, FL

On July 21, The Wolfsonian hosted an AFR Miami workshop on disaster preparedness, targeted towards museum professionals. The program featured facilitators Rosa Lowinger (conservator, Rosa Lowinger & Associates), Stephanie Hornbeck (director of conservation, Caryatid Conservation Services), and Viviana Dominguez (owner of Art Conservators Lab).


Focusing on fire and water damage to collections, the presenters provided information on initial response and the importance of prior preparation. Following the presentations, workshop participants took part in hand-on activities to learn about early response to fire and water events.


You can read more about the workshop here.


Join Alliance for Response NYC in becoming a 2014 Partner in Preparedness!

Posted on: June 13th, 2014 by Jessica Unger | New York City, NY

This program presents an excellent opportunity to highlight your organization’s commitment to the safety and well-being of your employees and their families. Join OEM and organizations across New York City as we seek to make our city the most prepared in the world.

Launch of the NW PA Network

Posted on: October 30th, 2013 by Jessica Unger | AFR, Northwest PA

The Northwest Pennsylvania Alliance for Response held its kickoff forum at the Raymond M. Blasco, M.D. Memorial Library in Erie, PA, on June 6, 2013. Despite flooding rainstorms throughout the afternoon of the meeting, about 35 people attended the session to learn about emergency preparedness and emergency resources in the Erie area.
The event Planning Committee felt that a good mix of institution types attended, including libraries, museums, archives, and arts/cultural/historical agencies. Attendees reported “some gain” in knowledge of the principles of disaster planning and response, available resources for disaster planning and mitigation, and special considerations of cultural institutions during emergencies. They reported “big gains” in knowledge of the structure and protocol of local emergency management, significance of local cultural resources, and cooperating with emergency responders and cultural institutions on disaster projects.
Potential topics for an initial Fall follow-up meeting, tentatively scheduled for November, include: a disaster plan writing and review clinic; touring a cultural heritage site with local emergency management, fire, and police representatives; and “Winterizing Your Building and Collections.”