Preparing for extreme weather

Stuart Ritchie of Aggreko

Weather patterns have become more and more unpredictable and as a result an increased emphasis has been placed on companies making preparations that include provisions for power outside the grid.

Loss of power for a business’s production or operation could have a devastating effect on output and revenue.  Even the loss of broadband connectivity could result in major losses, particularly to businesses that trade goods and services online.

Aggreko engineers - Ivory Coast With this in mind, I would like to outline Aggreko's top 5 tips to ensure your business is sufficiently prepared for power outages:

1.     Plan ahead – ensure you fully understand your business’s power needs – this will enable you to select a temporary or back up power supplier who will fit your business and ensure minimal downtime in the event of a disaster.  Having access to emergency power support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year can be the difference between saving and losing significant amounts of revenue.

2.     Draw up contingency plans – with weather patterns becoming more and more unpredictable, individual businesses in particular are encouraged to draw up foolproof business continuity plans (BCPs). These should include provisions for power outside the grid, with power being one key area that can in most cases, be planned for.  The adage “fail to prepare, prepare to fail” is never truer than when spoken in the context of business!

3.    Hire consulting engineers from specialised power rental companies – they can help businesses to identify potential issues and threats as early as possible. This enables them to undertake a comprehensive survey of its business’s requirements in good time. It means the findings can inform a detailed plan for the business to follow, resulting in less disruption when outages do occur.

4.     Draw on technology that can monitor and predict weather patterns – research by organisations such as the MetOffice in the UK can help businesses look for long-term weather trends which can inform contingency plans.  The further ahead a business can plan for power outages, the quicker they can move to implementation if necessary. All businesses are vulnerable to unforeseen or severe weather conditions that can prevent them from operating normally.  However, businesses also have access to solutions which will allow them to get back on track - how quickly they recover depends entirely on how well prepared they are in advance.

5.    Ensure your data is backed up – Digital data is the lifeblood of an organization - a good business continuity plan must take into account where and how backup data is stored – that these datacenters are located a sensible geographic distance from each other to ensure if a natural disaster hit, the backup would remain intact.


For more information about contingency planning, visit 

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