All businesses should have an adequate Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan or Emergency Action Plans (EAP). This procedure/plan should facilitate the actions that must be taken by workers during a workplace emergency. The aim of such a plan is to avoid injuries or damage during a case of emergency. The employer should always ensure they have an updated and adequate plan available to avoid injuries and damages.
A well-developed EAP should at least cover the following:
- Emergency evacuations (in cases such as fire, floods, severe weather conditions, chemical spillage, etc.).
- Chain of command (who will take charge during an emergency, such as senior manager).
- Evacuation routes, exits, assembly points.
- Procedures for assisting visitors and workers.
- Specific tasks that should take place (e.g. switching off electricity, contacting the authorities, assisting the vulnerable, etc.).
- How to account for all employees after the emergency.
- Special equipment required for workers during emergency evacuations (e.g. respiratory protection, dust masks etc.).
- Any workplace-specific considerations.
For more information and assistance on developing such plans, you can use the SIZA Guide to Health and Safety Management in Agriculture.