Hurricanes, tornadoes, firestorms are becoming a routine and escalating part of our climate change experiences – dire experiences. For us in the commercial and private security field, the 2020 storm and natural disaster events were record setting. Add on top of this the covid-19 pandemic, the threats facing security officers and their responsibilities have never been more severe. Whole sections of procedural manuals for company security response, including ours, have had to be written fresh to take into account covid-19 non-transmission practices and the response to storms or fire or other mass-people-affecting events.
For instance, what happens in hurricanes where people being guided to shelters or sheltering rooms by security personnel can’t socially distance, or their mask is lost or torn off. The same with wildfire evacuation and shelters. What happens when the nexus natural disaster and covid-19 intersect? Further, what happens in these cases when security officers are helping people who are injured and hospital bed capacity is full because of covid-19 cases?
Other areas we as a security company have to think about are supplies and materials that are necessary during minor or major disasters, access to those supplies and materials, and even the funding to make sure those supplies and materials are available where and when they’re needed.
Another aspect of this new age of emergency preparedness for our WWPRO team is preparing for simultaneous events. This is called the “stacking” concept, wherein security and other personnel have plans and practices in place to respond to multiple emergency events.