New addition to the 2018 NARSA Spring Conference Program: Disaster Planning: A True Story PDF Print Email
Wednesday, March 14, 2018 01:15 PM

New addition to the 2018 NARSA Spring Conference Program: Disaster Planning: A True Story

NARSA member Robert Duran of Cooling Systems Caribe Inc. in Puerto Rico will related how they weathered not one but two back-to-back hurricanes this past year.  First it was Hurricane Irma in Early September.  On September 4, Puerto Rico declared a state of emergency. By September 6, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency had deployed response teams in Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands. Supplies, including food rations, medical supplies, and blankets, were pre-staged in strategic locations on the islands for distribution. The rebuilding continues to this day.

Then on late Sept. 20 Hurricane Maria hits. The death toll in Puerto Rico is believed to be far higher than the official toll of 64 with estimates of the actual loss of life ranging from 500 to more than 1,000. Maria wrought catastrophic damage to the entirety of Dominica, which suffered an island-wide communication blackout. Much of the housing stock and infrastructure were left beyond repair, while the island's lush vegetation had been practically eradicated. The islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique endured widespread flooding, damaged roofs and uprooted trees. Puerto Rico suffered catastrophic damage, including destruction of its previously damaged electrical grid. For weeks in Maria's wake, most of the island's population suffered from flooding and lack of resources, compounded by the slow relief process. Total losses from the hurricane are estimated at upwards of $91.61 billion (2017 USD), mostly in Puerto Rico, ranking it as the third-costliest tropical cyclone on record.

Hurricanes, Nor'easters, blizzards, tornadoes, floods – nature has many ways to stop your business in its tracks. Relief efforts depend on heavy equipment, fire equipment and rescue trucks. Repair shops are needed to keep machinery working quickly and efficiently. Robert Duran will share with you his story and how to prepare your business for the worst imaginable. He will cover: 

  • Disaster plan
  • Redundant internet
  • Cash
  • Inventory
  • SAT ph​o​ne, Messenger
  • Offsite activation
  • Switching landline to cell
  • Fuel
  • Generators
  • Propane vs. Diesel
  • Batteries
  • Employee communications:  radio ads
  • Cell phones​: different providers​

For more on the Friday program that features a networking luncheon with keynote speaker NARSA President David Bienvenu Of Radiator Service Inc., sessions on family succession planning, DPF repair practices and saving money and downtime with safe business practices, and an end of day reception and table top exhibit.

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