Effectively managing an incident, emergency, or evacuation

It is important to monitor indicators of further deterioration and evaluate threats as the current geopolitical and security situation develops in key regions such as Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, but also Africa and South America.

“Security managers and senior decision-makers should ask if it is business as usual or if there is a risk to operations and staff. When a significant situation develops, there may be a need for a decision to relocate or evacuate. This may be a swift decision passed by government or senior management. Having communication strategies in place as well as pre-defined evacuation routes reduces the risk of breakdowns and misunderstandings.” says Henrik Reuterdahl, Head of Intelligence at SRS Security.

Björn Wide, Head of Security for Business Sweden representing employees in 40 locations all across the world, highlights that ”to implement pro-active security measures, ensure preparedness and effectively handle potential incidents or emergencies, we have documented risk assessments and security instructions for each office that is available to both managers and staff . For those offices located in countries with increased political risk we have prepared specific emergency response plans”.

In case there is a decision to initiate evacuation of staff and their families there may be a need to relocate or remain for several days at a pre-determined safe location such as a residence, office, hotel, or embassy. Several different assembly areas and evacuation routes including air, sea, and road travel may be required depending on how a situation develops and in case of infrastructure disruption.

To effectively manage an incident, emergency or crisis that may require relocation or evacuation of staff and their families, the emergency response can be divided into four phases:

  1. Immediate Action to preserve life and property, complete initial assessments, and initiate emergency response plans.
  2. Containment to prevent the situation from worsening, gain control of events and additional time for decision-making and prevent inappropriate spread of information.
  3. Assessment to ongoing gather information, analyse implications and prepare decisions with longer term objectives in mind.
  4. Response as determined from initial and ongoing assessments and by implementing medium and long-term actions.