When Danger Strikes, Are You Prepared?
Many building owners might see crises and think, "That'll never happen to my building." But, moments ago, Walter Ulmer, president of emergency preparedness firm Remlu, reminded everyone why having a well-thought out emergency response plan is of the utmost importance. At an AOBA-sponsored event in light of September as National Preparedness Month, Walter said owners and property managers need systems such as minimum and maximum business continuity expectations in place, to give tenants specific metrics of how business can operate during difficult times. Yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of the Navy Yard shooting, Walter adds.
Cassidy Turley's Katherine Nettle and Brookfield Office Properties' Karen Hunt have dealt with emergencies, including ones not even in their buildings. Katherine, who oversees management of the Pepco HQ on 9th Street, was forced to act quick two summers ago when an active shooter was loose at the Family Research Council building next door. Having specific lockdown procedures reviewed with tenants ahead of time helped minimize the impact on her building, Katherine says. Karen, who oversees Brookfield's 1250 Connecticut Ave, managed the aftermath of a massive water main break at Connecticut and N streets, which shut the building down over a weekend in 2012. Being in constant communication with tenants and staggering shifts with engineers (for around-the-clock recovery work) helped the building open back up fully by Monday morning.