Hurricane Katrina’s 10 year anniversary reminds building owners and operators to prepare for unexpected emergencies

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Johnson Controls shares important reminders for the severe weather season

MILWAUKEE – Aug. 27, 2015 – Ten years ago Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and many other Gulf coast communities. As rebuilding efforts continue today, Johnson Controls shares important tips for building owners and operators who may face the threat of severe weather or unexpected emergencies.

Emergency preparedness recommendations:

Remember the domino-effect on operations - Consider the accumulated risks that result from “falling dominoes” in emergency situations. Develop a hazard assessment plan with a buildings expert to understand what may occur if a process fails and how to remedy a subsequent problem.

Audit infrastructure now and avoid future risk - Work with a buildings partner to assess your building or campus-wide infrastructure. Ensure IT and various system integrations have the necessary redundancies designed into your buildings. Also consider developing a supply stockpile that may be needed during a severe weather event.

Assess your notification process - During a weather or safety emergency, far too many institutions learn too late that their notification processes are outdated or unsuccessful. If your organization serves multiple building occupants, such as a college or large commercial building, consult with building experts to audit your mass notification technologies and resources. Educate your in-house emergency response teams on the latest compliance standards, especially as it relates to building evacuation process and protocol.

Contact information is critical - When severe weather hits you may not have access to your online contact directories or cell phone service. Understand, in advance, how you can reach a building expert for rental services, such as emergency generators, chillers and packaged equipment.

Clean-up recommendations:

Potential Hazards  Best Practice
Flooded Basements Avoid entering basements/mechanical rooms that contain water. Experts will use pumps and hoses to remove water prior to entering.
Down Power Lines Do not try to remove power lines without assistance from theutility provider. Down lines may still be energized.
Fallen Trees or Debris Wear the correct personal protective equipment (PPE) and establish a safe zone before cutting or removing debris from trees, siding, chimney bricks, etc.

Water-Covered Roadways

Avoid driving on roads that are water covered. Unseen damage to the understructure of the roads/bridges may exist.
Sink Holes Stop and move away from the surrounding area. The perimeter of the sink hole is very unstable and may collapse further.

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About Johnson Controls

Johnson Controls is a global diversified technology and industrial leader serving customers in more than 150 countries. Our 170,000 employees create quality products, services and solutions to optimize energy and operational efficiencies of buildings; leadacid automotive batteries and advanced batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles; and seating components and systems for automobiles. Our commitment to sustainability dates back to our roots in 1885, with the invention of the first electric room thermostat. Through our growth strategies and by increasing market share we are committed to delivering value to shareholders and making our customers successful. In 2015, Corporate Responsibility Magazine recognized Johnson Controls as the #14 company in its annual “100 Best Corporate Citizens” list. For additional information, please visit or follow us @johnsoncontrols on Twitter.

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