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Preparing for a lockdown in the workplace

Options for responding to an emergency – Preparing for a lockdown in the workplace

Identifying and responding to fire related emergencies traditionally has been the primary focus of workplace emergency preparedness. The threat environment has now evolved, exposing organisations to over 36 different types of emergencies that could occur within a workplace at any time. Are you prepared?

The reality is that organisations can no longer rely on a single response solution. We need to train warden teams (emergency control organisations) on all the available options, empowering them to act confidently and efficiently.

What are some workplace emergencies?

Emergencies may be human, natural or technological. They can include but not limited to, the following:

  • Active aggressors
  • Fires
  • Explosions
  • Flood
  • Toxic gas release
  • Chemical spills
  • Domestic or civil disturbances
  • Medical emergencies
  • Biohazards

Does your workplace know the options available to respond to all the above examples?

Preparing for the unexpected

In some cases, it’s obvious that an evacuation is not always the best course of action. For example, in the case of an active aggressor or a medical emergency, the best decision may be to stay put and lockdown the workplace. But in other situations, it can be difficult to decide on what is the best response, examples include: extreme weather conditions or an armed intrusion in a nearby building.

What is a lockdown?

Lockdowns are usually initiated when an emergency situation exists in or around a building, but it is unsafe to evacuate.

Knowing when and how to lockdown a facility is essential to maximise the life safety of employees/occupants during a potential or actual dangerous incident. A lockdown may be preventative or emergency, depending on the situation.

  • Preventative Lockdown is initiated when a threat exists in part of the building or the immediate vicinity.
  • Emergency Lockdown is initiated when an actual incident happens on-site (such as an active shooter or hostage situation), with the potential for imminent harm to occupants.

Ask yourself…

Has a lockdown exercise been performed at your workplace? If so, were all occupants aware of the correct procedure to follow? Or was there confusion? Have you considered, how you would effectively integrate lockdown exercises, along with all new types of incidents into your emergency response plan?

First 5 Minutes’ programs are designed to prepare your occupants for all types of emergencies; we discuss the available options and equip your team with the knowledge and skills to respond safely and effectively.

Contact us today to find out more

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