Does your continuity planning address risks posed by external threats, such as from contractors or other utilities upon which you are dependent?
Do your operations staff have working relationships with central/local government and emergency services that will be effective during an emergency?
Are there mutual support arrangements with other utilities to assist in your survival?
Do you feel your sector’s response to a major event will be coordinated and thus protect the marketplace?
Can you ensure continuity of services required for essential health, police, fire and local government CDEM activity?
It is essential that lifeline utilities are resilient to emergencies and that their emergency planning is integrated with the wider community’s CDEM planning.
The CDEM Act requires lifeline utilities to be able to continue functioning to the fullest possible extent during and after an emergency, albeit this may be at a reduced level. It is essential that lifeline utilities are resilient to emergencies and that their emergency planning is integrated with the wider community’s CDEM planning, so that both are effective at minimising loss and hastening a return to business. This can only be achieved by cooperative planning between utilities, local government and the emergency services. The focus is on business continuity planning to ensure essential services are continued or restored to priority facilities and customers. Fortunately many New Zealand utilities practice sound risk, asset and emergency management and cooperate through arrangements such as Lifelines Groups.
Utilities participating in cooperative CDEM planning are realising a range of benefits such as:
The CDEM Act 2002 does not impose new business requirements or alter responsibility for risk, asset and emergency management. The emphasis is on ensuring utilities provide continuity of operation, particularly where their service supports essential CDEM activity.
MCDEM has issued a 'Director's Guidelines' pursuant to section 8(2)e of the Act to clarify the expectations of lifeline utilities under the Act.
Individual Lifeline Utilities should:
Where requested by MCDEM or CDEM Groups, utility representatives are expected to assist in:
Your sector should:
Your staff are one of your most vital assets in an emergency. How prepared they and their families are will directly affect your businesses ability to respond to, and recover from, a civil defence emergency.
Encourage staff members to visit the Get Ready Get Thru website to find out how to get ready.
How to be prepared at work provides information on general business preparation for emergencies.
Lifeline Utility involvement in exercises is a crucial part of testing emergency plans and inter-agency communications. Exercises play a vital role in the process of developing local and national community resilience.
Are you sure you're ready for the next earthquake? ShakeOut will return in 2015! Sign up for New Zealand Shakeout today!