An Earthquake an Interesting Meeting Makes!

Many of you probably felt (or didn't feel) the unusual earthquake that swept the East Coast yesterday afternoon. Working in the Executive Offices of my hotel, it was remarkable to watch an entire team of hotel managers rushing through the foyers of our meeting space and hallways of our sleeping rooms to check on our guests. Even more remarkable was to observe the calm, cool, collected meeting planners counting heads and helping direct the guests to the nearest evacuation spot.

The question is, how prepared are you? As a seasoned planner, have you taken the time to review disaster readiness guides in preparation for the unknown? Especially in cities such as New York and Washington DC where terror threats are high, or in the south where Mother Nature spits hurricane after hurricane onto our shores and beyond, it's important to be prepared for a disaster.
Sure, there is only so much you can do when the unexpected happens. But for larger conventions, try to develop a contingency plan of sorts. Rest assured that most sales contracts contain a force majeure clause that protect your program from such financial harm and liability, but that doesn't change the fact that horror may be striking your destination of choice. That being the first step, take additional steps to familiarize yourself with hotel and local city evacuation plans. The best resource for this information is a security or loss prevention department within the hotel, or even the local police station. If you're lucky enough to work with a well-staffed planning committee, assign them each with a disaster preparedness fact that they are responsible for in the event of an emergency.

What do YOU do in an emergency?

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