Are you ready for Winter?

Winter doesn’t have to wreak havoc on your business. With the correct preparations and the right level of business insurance in place, you’ll have the peace of mind you need to ensure your business can carry on, no matter what’s round the corner. Here are some useful tips to consider:

Prepare for storms and floods

  • Ensure business premises are in good repair and covered by a planned preventative maintenance programme – make sure flood risks are included in your business continuity plan and health & safety risk assessments
  • Carry out necessary building repairs to roofs, windows etc before the cold weather sets in
  • Inspect roofs and gutters at least annually and clean or repair promptly
  • Seek specialist advice on drainage if your site has a history of drainage problems
  • Keep surface gullies, gratings and drainage channels and drains clear
  • Ask a qualified arboriculturalist to inspect any trees on your site
  • Ensure emergency supplies are kept on site or nearby
  • If your premises are in an area that may be affected by flooding from a river or the sea, sign up to the Environment Agency’s Floodline Warnings Direct Service for warnings via telephone, fax or pager

Check your water pipes and heating systems

  • Ensure all water pipes (inside and out) and storage tanks are properly lagged
  • Check water storage tanks and toilet cisterns have suitable overflow pipes directed out into the open or over a suitable drain
  • Make sure roof-level plant rooms or water tank rooms are provided with a suitable bund or similar containment to prevent minor water leaks spreading outside of the room or into the top of vertical service shafts
  • Ensure your building’s sprinkler system is properly maintained to reduce the risk of burst or frozen water pipes
  • Check your heating system is safe to use when the property is unattended, or consider using suitable heaters such as night storage heaters in more vulnerable rooms – arrange an annual inspection of your central heating system including any necessary anti-corrosion treatments
  • Check that a central or fixed warm-air type heating system that is not left on during cold weather periods is fitted with a low-limit thermostat
  • Store your stock as high off the floor as possible and at least 100mm off the ground
  • Fit an automatic electric sump pump in any basements used for storage
  • Avoid storing goods directly below roof valley gutters or similar vulnerable areas
  • Fit a water leak/flood alarm in vulnerable areas, e.g. computer or telecommunications equipment rooms and ensure the signal is monitored 24 hours a day
  • Ensure all stop cocks and valves are identified, clearly marked and accessible

Talk to PremierCare

As well as taking the necessary steps to prepare your business for the winter months, arranging the right level of insurance cover – including business interruption insurance – is essential. PremierCare’s brokers will work with you to assess your winter weather risks and arrange an appropriate level of insurance cover to protect your building, its contents and your livelihood.

Call us today on 0844 259 0033.