Do you have a plan?


As I sit here in the baking heat it seems strange to be talking about flooding, but a flood is exactly what we had a few weeks ago.

As an FM I’ve had to deal with flooding and related fallout on many, many occasions. This time however, it was my own offices that got soaked! I’ll spare you the details (there may be a blog about the pain of legal action coming soon!) but suffice to say we had thousands of gallons of water on our heads in a very, very short space of time.

I’m confident that we will survive this setback ourselves, but there is an often quoted figure that 80% of businesses fail within 2 years of a disaster (although this is somewhat disputed).

LCMB were prepared, we’d thought ahead in case the unimaginable happened.   Yes, we did suffer direct losses and severe disruption but we had a plan in place so were back up and running within a day or two. Many are not so lucky!

Drawing on this, I wanted to share some of the lessons I’ve learnt:

What can happen?

Apart from fire and flood, you need to be asking yourself what else? Our incident was caused by the roof not coping with the rain, not something that you really expect to happen, yet it did and we had to respond really quickly. Try and imagine enough detail that nothing comes as a shock but still remain vague enough that you are able to cope with the unexpected.

Where do we go?

I remember well the huge floor plates of ready-to-use empty desks that companies used to keep in case something goes wrong. With modern technology the chances are you don’t need to go quite as far as that but do give it some thought, if things go wrong you’ll be very glad that you did.

What do we need to safeguard?

In our case the computer hardware was ruined, this is inconvenient but the really valuable stuff is the data it holds. Our data gets securely and automatically backed up every day – this meant that we did not lose our work. I can now tell you, without any doubt, that the cost of the backup system is a fraction of the potential cost of losing your data.

Accidents do happen, make sure you have a plan in place and test it a few times a year. If you plan ahead a bit you probably won’t get nearly as wet as I did!


Here at LCMB we spend our working lives making your buildings work harder and more efficiently, if you would like any help or information please do get in touch with us or telephone us on 01295 722823.

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