Met Eireann are currently advising that Hurricane Lorenzo is likely to impact Ireland over the coming days. While there is currently no weather warning in place, employers should prepare for potential service disruptions over the coming days.
Weather Warnings are presented in three categories:
– Weather Alert – Be Aware
YELLOW level weather alerts are for weather conditions that do not pose an immediate threat to the general population, but only to those exposed to risk by nature of their location and/or activity.
– Weather Warning – Be Prepared
ORANGE level weather warning implies that all recipients in the affected areas should prepare themselves in an appropriate way for the anticipated conditions.
– Severe Weather Warning – Take Action
The issue of RED level severe weather warnings implies that recipients take action to protect themselves and/or their properties.
At this point there is no indication this will escalate to a Status Red event; however, ISME will update accordingly should this occur. The current forecast from Met Éireann is available here.
In the event of a Status Red weather alert being issued, ISME advise that businesses prioritise the safety of employees and customers, and cease activity until the alert ends (but only if the specific area is designated as being impacted by the alert).
What steps should employers take?
It is important to consider how a severe weather incident will impact your business:
- Preparing your Business
- Are your premises prepared for the water inundation?
- Are you adequately insured to cover potential loss associated with weather damage?
- Consider how a business decision will be made as to whether or not closure is necessary. Who will make the decision; and more importantly, how will this decision be communicated to employees?
- Preparing Employees
- How will the company communicate the situation and any updates to employees?
- What supports can be offered to employees adversely effected by a closure? For all employees, matters such as transport to and from work should be considered, including any impact on public transport.
- What approach will be taken regarding pay in the event of a business closure?
- Have employees who work in outdoor environments had their roles risk assessed?
- Customers and Suppliers
- How will the business handle a drop in sales?
- Has the company considered customer safety on the premises and during access and egress?