Of Buffett and Business Continuity: Preparing for Hurricane Season, Other Natural, Man-Made Events

This time of year always reminds me of a Jimmy Buffett song, Tryin’ to Reason with Hurricane Season.  (Actually, many things remind me of JB songs…)  This title is particularly timely as the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season officially opens on June 1, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center expects this season, which runs through Nov. 30, to be an active one.

As we move from spring into summer – a time of frequent severe weather events – Verizon, its nationwide networks and dedicated employees are ready to continue serving consumers, businesses and government customers.  Verizon updates its emergency preparedness plans each year to be ready for a wide range of natural and man-made events.  The company also conducts periodic drills throughout the year to test the readiness of its networks and backup power systems in the event of a disaster.

“Preparation is the key for responding to the aftermath of hurricanes or other disasters,” said Dick Price, Verizon’s chief business continuity officer.  “Verizon uses an all-hazards approach to emergency management, meaning that we plan for almost any type of event that could affect our business operations.”

Verizon business continuity teams and network personnel closely monitor potential threats to company facilities anywhere in the country and complete necessary preparations, ranging from testing and confirming fuel supplies for backup generators to stocking critical supplies in centralized locations for rapid deployment to hard-hit areas.

As always, our employees are on standby to respond to any crisis in the event network equipment is impacted or when emergency first-responder or customer support is required.  We also can deploy employees from unaffected parts of the country to help restore services in hard-hit areas. The company can deploy its hazmat team, called MERIT (Major Emergency Response Incident Team), within a few hours of receiving an assignment.  For a video on our business continuity/hazardous response team, see below:

We also can deploy our Emergency Response Mobile Communications Service fleet, which can provide critical communication services for business and government customers anywhere in North America.  Using specially equipped vehicles and trailers, Verizon technical experts can reestablish communications for customers during unplanned disruptions.   

Planning and preparedness are the best defense against emergency situations, and we all should take steps to have a plan – at home or at work.  Several web sites are great references when it comes to emergency preparedness and tips for consumers and businesses.  Check out the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s, www.ready.gov, or NOAA’s www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare

For a short video on customer-readiness tips, see below: 


To provide our customers with the most up-to-date information, we’ll include updates on preparations for and response to hurricanes or other serious natural or man-made events at www.verizon.com/news, http://news.verizonwireless.com/, or www.verizonenterprise.com/about/news/