In the two southern California earthquakes last week, many owners re-evaluated the earthquake log systems and many need to update the procedures on site. Having a system in place to respond to earthquakes and emergencies is critical, especially since an earthquake can happen at any time.
"Severe earthquakes are so rare that a response program needs to be updated frequently or emergency practices are often overlooked." Steve Core, President of RiverRock Real Estate Grouptells GlobeSt.com. “These quakes were a reminder that an emergency, not just an earthquake, can happen at any time. Knowing what to do before the emergency occurs is important because too much happens during an event and there are too many moving parts to find out in the moment. "
The first rule of any high quality earthquake or emergency log system is to make sure tenants feel safe during a disaster and to make sure the facilities are as safe as possible. “Our protocol is activated especially for an earthquake from a magnitude of 5.0,” says Core. “We send a regional and / or company-wide warning via our communication platform, and our teams make voice contact with their supervisor or a member of the management team. Our management teams in other regions offer additional support and are contacted if the local call center is affected or cannot be reached. "
RiverRock uses the system as soon as possible after an earthquake. For properties with 24-hour coverage, this can be done almost immediately. “In previous quakes, roads and infrastructure were damaged and unsafe. The protocol therefore stipulates that, for safety reasons, managers only have to drive to their properties in daylight, ”says Core. “In daylight, all properties are visited and customers are informed of their status. Our construction management team is on standby to help coordinate repairs, construction inspections, etc. "
RiverRock updates its log frequently and happened to have updated its system before the earthquakes hit last week. "When the quakes hit, the plan went as expected, starting with the broadcast email," explains Core. “Calls came in almost immediately. The on-site services were contacted and customers were immediately notified that we were aware of an event and that we were responding. Saturday was spent inspecting the properties and providing further updates to clients and executives. Fortunately, outside of minor cracks, ceiling displacements, and lift backsets, no major damage was reported. "
Despite the latest update, Core says the company will review the response and make improvements if necessary. This underscores the importance of an updated quality system. "As in any issue, there are always lessons and things that can be improved," he says. “We have put together a summary report and observations and will be reviewed with the entire team within the next 48 hours to improve our performance. This way we can be even better prepared in the next emergency. "