While you focus on the day-to-day workings at your facility, your Emergency Action Plan and any practice or drills may be put on the backburner. Unfortunately, your facility won’t be given advance notice of an impending emergency, so dusting off and executing a drill for your EAP is key to keeping your employees safe and prepared. While you are running a drill, have these 5 tips in mind to make sure your EAP is foolproof for when an emergency actually happens:
Who: While every employee will be involved once an Emergency Action Plan is set into motion, there are several key players that are identified beforehand. In your facility, your key players may be a safety manager, a security guard, a shift supervisor, a plant fireman, or any number of other positions. Ideally, several people in different roles will have a full understanding of the EAP and how it should be executed. That way, if one employee leaves, there is always someone prepared in an emergency who can also train and instruct others.
What: Make it clear to all involved what you are working toward with an Emergency Action Plan. During your drill, remind everyone that, while speed is necessary, safety is the goal. Employees should complete an evacuation in less than 3 minutes and everyone should be accounted for once they arrive at the designated gathering area. Directions to this area should be available throughout your facility and posted along the evacuation route. As you execute a drill, locate and confirm these are in place.
Where: Depending on the emergency, you may need to designate several evacuation areas. When deciding where employees will gather, consider the space for its size to accommodate everyone and also ensure there are several points of entry so there won’t be a bottleneck during an emergency.
When: In the moment, determining what emergency is happening decides which EAP is set into motion. Make sure all employees involved know what each emergency signal, alert or alarm means and how to respond. Again, the posted signs for the EAP will help your employees to remember in the moment.
Why: Everyone who’s involved in your EAP should understand the importance of the plan, but it can be a good idea during a drill to remind them of the importance of their cooperation and attention to the Emergency Action Plan. Once everyone is gathered at the designated location, review how the drill went and explain areas that need improvement in case of an actual emergency.
Reviewing your EAP, making sure the key players are aware of their role and training your employees should be regular occurrences throughout the year. At HealthSafe, we work with companies to conduct “tabletop exercises” at their facility to review and revise their Emergency Action Plan. Sometimes bringing in a fresh set of eyes is a great way to get a different look at your current practices. If it’s been a while since your Emergency Action Plan was put into action, reach out to our team today for a quote on a consultation.