By: Rhett Asher, Vice President, Asset Protection, Data Security & Crisis Management, Food Marketing Institute
Rain Storm

While we patiently watch the trajectory of Joaquin, many news outlets are reflecting on the last time a super storm hit the East Coast: Hurricane Sandy. Sandy was devastating; she not only wreaked havoc on communities, she destroyed lives and the future of communities.

Grocery stores often became the choice command centers for crisis professionals during Sandy, providing shelter, power generators, supplies, and of course, food.  I heard from our stores up and down the Mid Atlantic where the storm wiped out roads and literally created islands. Our members rated the lack of infrastructure and ease of access as two of the biggest obstacles in getting communities the support they needed. When ice, water and supplies cannot reach the intended destination, it’s often important to know what government agency and to whom to direct the crisis call.

As a crisis management professional that has stood beside this industry through storms from Hurricane Katrina to Superstorm Sandy, I find that there’s a need for consistent resources and communications links. So far, it looks like Joaquin will not have the impact of the aforementioned storms, but as always, these lesser storms are a constant reminder of the need for consistent, constant and never waving contingency planning.  

No matter the storm, FMI has resources for you and your team members. Visit FMI’s Crisis Management Page where you can find links to government resources and links to FMI’s Crisis Communications Manual for additional support.

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