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As climate change becomes more noticeable, premises will increasingly be affected by severe weather events. 

Buildings, inside and out, can be impacted if there are any defects that need repairing or strengthening.

Even if your business comes out the other side of a storm relatively unscathed, the effect it has on utilities and infrastructure, such as public roads and transport, can make it difficult for employees to get to work and suppliers and customers may also be unable to reach you. Your business continuity plan needs to be ready so that you can react quickly.

Although we cannot change the weather there are steps you take that may reduce the risk of your business being affected.

  • Implement a proper planned preventative maintenance programme for your buildings
  • Have your roofs, gutters and drains inspected, checked for defects and cleaned at least annually. Where there are trees close by, it may be necessary to check the gutters more often. This is particularly important for buildings where the roofs are pitched with valleys, or are surrounded by a parapet wall.
  • Make sure that you are signed up to receive weather alerts from the Met Office or a similar reputable forecaster. This will allow you as much time as possible to prepare and protect your property.
  • Get the trees within your site inspected on a regular basis by a suitable and competent arboriculturalist and try to gain support and coordinate with your neighbours. During strong winds, there is a risk of branches breaking off, as well as damaged or diseased trees coming down, and falling onto people, vehicles or roofs.
  • Consider moving vehicles to somewhere sheltered and secure if a hailstorm is forecast. It’s worth thinking about where you could find temporary shelter if it’s unlikely that you will be able to protect all of the vehicles on your premises. For example, a local shopping centre’s multi-storey car park could be an option, but do check parking restrictions and charges, and consider asking permission beforehand.
  • Use blankets or car covers to protect each vehicle, securing them in a way that won’t damage the paint but also so they don’t blow off in the wind (where it’s not possible or practicable to move vehicles to roofed areas). You may be able to find and purchase covers designed specifically for protection against hail.

    - Do not begin this task if the storm is a moment away – personal safety is more important than preventing property damage.
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Frequently asked questions
Find answers to some common queries about managing risks to people, property and business continuity.