Loss Prevention for Hurricanes
Tips and Insights
September 23, 2020


  • Follow local radio or television stations for official emergency information and instructions.
  • Before a storm, take photographs or video of your facilities both inside and out, from all angles. This will help to substantiate insurance claims later.
  • Assemble insurance policies and financial records necessary to expedite quick settlement of claims; package them in waterproof container.
  • Make arrangements to pay employees, preferably in cash, as it may be some time before banking institutions are operational.
  • Implement hurricane procedures as conditions warrant.

Building Interior

  • Move goods, equipment, or furniture away from windows and skylights to avoid water damage.
  • Clear all desk and table tops of small loose objects.
  • Take down all loosely secured pictures, plaques, etc.
  • Box or place any loose items (e.g. papers, books, hanging plants) in desk drawers or storage cabinets.
  • Relocate files, boxes, computers, office machines and other equipment to the innermost portion of the building or a safer location.
  • Do not leave boxes or equipment on theground floor; elevate them by placing items on desks or table tops.
  • Remove contents of lower file cabinet drawers on the ground floor of the building and secure content elsewhere.
  • If time permits, make an inventory of all moved items to ease unpacking after the storm.
  • Disconnect all electrical appliances and equipment, except for refrigeration.
  • Cover merchandise, office machines, specialized equipment, file cabinets, copy machines, computer terminals, etc. with tarpaulins or plastic sheeting and secure with tape.
  • Close all windows and draw blinds or drapes.
  • Turn off the electricity (except for refrigeration) at the power box and lock all doors when you leave.
  • Before leaving the property, recheck the securing of outdoor objects.
  • If you own equipment that could be useful after the storm, notify local emergency management officials


  • Establish an employee training program on your hurricane procedures.
  • Inform key employees or essential staff of specific responsibilities under the established hurricane procedure.
  • Appoint an individual and a backup to initiate hurricane procedures.Specify conditions under which hurricane procedures should be implemented.
  • Acquire emergency protective equipment and supplies. These items may include heavy plastic sheeting, duct tape, masking tape, sandbags, emergency generator, storm shutters, chain saw, large pieces of plywood, hand tools, and other essential items.
  • Establish plans for the protection of computer files, such as a backup system, to secure data.
  • Develop a system for the identification of employees during an emergency (e.g. I.D. cards, vehicle permits, badges, etc.).
  • Create a plan to inform all employees on when and how they will be notified to report back to work

Building Exterior

  • Clean drains, gutters and downspouts of the building.
  • Remove antennas or loose objects from the roof.
  • Bring in display racks and other objects usually left outside. Secure all loose objects, such as trash cans, which might cause damage during strong winds.
  • Remove outdoor signs, especially those that swing or are portable.
  • If the building has exterior glass frontage, clear out that section of the structure as much as possible and use shutters or boards to protect glass. If you have no shutters or boards, strong masking or duct tape may be used. Tape in an “X” fashion on the inside of the glass to reduce shattering.

This article is provided for general informational purposes only and does not constitute and is not intended to take the place of legal or risk management advice. Readers should consult their own counsel or other representatives for any such advice. Any and all external websites or sources referred to herein are for informational purposes only and are not affiliated with or endorsed by OneBeacon Insurance Group. OneBeacon Insurance Group hereby disclaims any and all liability arising out of the information contained herein.