Understanding your flood risksTypes of floods include river, sewer, and surface water flooding. An important first step in your prevention plan is figuring out what types of floods your small business may encounter. For example, if you’re based in an urban centre like Toronto, summer flooding is common due to aging infrastructure that is unable to handle surface runoff. City planning departments can help you understand the history of your area and if your location is high-risk. Once you know this information, you can narrow down what coverage your business may need and the potential impact on your operations.
Protect your propertyAs part of your business continuity planning, identify evacuation routes and organize emergency drills for your employees. Perform regular inspection and maintenance of your property to identify areas that may leave you vulnerable to flooding and water damage. Here are a few things to consider:
- Install backflow prevention check valves to stop floodwater from entering at vulnerable points where utility and sewer lines enter the facility.
- Install permanent sump pumps with solar and backup power.
- Seal walls to prevent or reduce seepage and if necessary, reinforce walls to resist water pressure.
- Install flood shields to prevent the passage of water through doors, windows, ventilation shafts, or other openings.
- Establish backup systems for emergencies, such as portable pumps to remove flood water, alternate power sources such as generators or gasoline-powered pumps, and battery-powered emergency lighting, located well above the high water mark.