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Commercial Property Requires Comprehensive Safety Preparedness

No place is one hundred percent safe. Risks always exist, whether in the form of aggressive attacks by bad people, shoddy infrastructure that causes slip-and-fall accidents, or even cybersecurity threats from halfway around the world. This is something owners of commercial properties must always be aware of. It is also why, by law, they must make their real estate holdings as safe as possible for both the workers who occupy their commercial property on a daily basis and the residents who might live in their apartment complexes.


Not all property owners are able to provide adequate security for one reason or another. Nevertheless, say the attorneys at Stein Law, a firm specializing in negligent security attorney, commercial and business property owners have a legal obligation to adequately provide proper security for their guests, renters, visitors, and even the general public.

Property owners must not only provide safe and well-maintained infrastructure but also to protect innocent people from criminal conduct. This is especially the case when unlawful criminal conduct is a real probability, such as in crime-ravaged cities like New York and Chicago. Failure to provide such security can lead to injury, rape, assault, robbery, and death.

What Can Property Owners Do?

Knowing all of this, what can you do to make your commercial property safer? The answer has everything to do with a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan.

According to a recent report by Wincon Security, in today’s overly busy, electronically driven world, the responsibilities that go with managing a commercial property are major. Perhaps the most critical of all the challenges property managers face is that of being fully prepared for emergencies that can and will happen on-site. It’s crucial for owners to understand the overall importance of maintaining a well-structured and thought-out emergency preparedness plan. This will not only ensure the protection of the property’s occupants but also preserve the property in general.      

With that in mind, here are a few steps you can take to create an effective emergency preparedness plan for your commercial property. Keep in mind that you can enact an effective safety program on your own. Or you can hire a reputable security company to do it on your behalf.

Be Ready to Respond Swiftly

If an emergency occurs, you will find yourself fighting against the clock. If you’ve hired a professional security company to take care of your major security needs, they will have already put in place a proactive preparation program. By this time, you should also have already implemented communication technology to instantly alert you, tenants, and first responders the instant an emergency occurs.  

It’s vital that you keep a list of emergency contacts for your commercial property. This is necessary to ensure rapid access to critical services. Make certain your maintenance team is well-versed when it comes to shutting down the electricity, gas, and water to prevent excessive property damage. You will also want to designate on-site employees who can assist tenants and special needs people during mandatory evacuations.

Conduct emergency response drills on a regular basis. Doing so will ensure that your team’s readiness is where it should be. This will also serve to keep them well-informed of any new procedural changes in standard operating procedure.    

Clearly Map Out Evacuation Routes for Commercial Property Tenants

When an emergency occurs, you don’t have time to think. This is why having established clearly marked evacuation routes will potentially make a life-saving difference. Professional security companies recommend prominently displayed evacuation maps on every building floor. Display these maps near stairwells, elevators, and exits. Maps should include crucial safety information regarding avoiding elevators during an active fire emergency and also about the proper way to close and seal fire doors.

All detailed information illustrating evacuation directions must be placed in corridors and hallways so that anxious occupants can be guided effectively and without having to take the time to think about it. By providing easy access to information, you will contribute in a profound way to a successful evacuation.   

Maintain Critical Safety Systems for Commercial Property

It’s the property manager’s responsibility to maintain all building and ground safety systems so they will operate perfectly when required, and so they remain compliant with the latest regulations and codes. Security companies recommend routine adjustments and checks by on-site maintenance teams. You can supplement these efforts by professional input when necessary.   

Items that should be regularly inspected must include but are not limited to fire sprinklers, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting, and smoke alarms. This will ensure their functionality in case of emergency. Property owners should also perform annual inspections by industry-certified professionals to maintain only the highest safety preparedness standards. Be sure to keep emergency exits unobstructed, and update evacuation maps to reflect any changes in layout.  


Keep Tenants Informed and Engaged

Maybe safeguarding your commercial property is essential to emergency preparedness, but tenant safety is of paramount importance. This means establishing open communication with all tenants to ensure their well-being. Additionally, supply tenants with a comprehensive list of emergency contacts and respective phone numbers. They should also have full access to your contact information.  

Include an emergency preparedness packet with tenant move-in material. Thereafter, update the information annually to reflect any changes in regulations, laws, or codes. For multi-family apartment dwellings that allow pets, you might wish to distribute emergency decals. Tenants can display these decals on doors and windows.

If you schedule property changes or alterations along with changes in emergency procedures, be sure to keep tenants of commercial properties informed to ensure an effective evacuation just in case a disaster strikes.

Remember, when it comes to emergencies occurring on commercial properties, it’s not a matter of if they are going to occur but a matter of when they are going to occur. The only truly effective way to handle these emergencies is to establish a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan.

It’s possible to accomplish an effective plan for your commercial property by utilizing your own on-site maintenance professionals. However, it’s better to hire a fully trained and reputable security company. Their staff will be aware of the latest safety techniques. These can include everything from how to keep tenants safe from would-be attackers to responding to dangerous fire outbreaks or cybersecurity threats.

Technologically speaking, the 2020s is a wonderful time to be alive. But it is also a dangerous time too. It’s important to be prepared for anything.