Preparedness is a shared responsibility across federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial governments; the private sector; non-governmental organizations; and the American people.
A definite plan to deal with major emergencies is an important element of OH&S programs.
Besides the major benefit of providing guidance during an emergency, developing the plan has other advantages. You may discover unrecognized hazardous conditions that would aggravate an emergency situation and you can work to eliminate them. The planning process may bring to light deficiencies, such as the lack of resources (equipment, trained personnel, supplies), or items that can be corrected before an emergency occurs. In addition, an emergency plan promotes safety awareness and shows the organization’s commitment to the safety of workers.
The lack of an emergency plan could lead to severe losses such as multiple casualties and possible financial collapse of the organization.
Since emergencies will occur, preplanning is necessary. An urgent need for rapid decisions, shortage of time, and lack of resources and trained personnel can lead to chaos during an emergency. Time and circumstances in an emergency mean that normal channels of authority and communication cannot be relied upon to function routinely. The stress of the situation can lead to poor judgment resulting in severe losses. A well thought out, well-organized emergency response plan will help to eliminate these issues.