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Wildfire Emergency

Business Emergency & Safety Trends for 2024 and How You Can Prepare

Wildfire Emergency

February 20, 2024 Posted by in Mass Notification, Internal Communications

You may have felt that emergencies and disasters seem to be on the rise – especially emergencies and crises that affect businesses. Recent data confirms this. According to the Institute for Crises Management Annual Report, “For 2022, 56.74% of crises tracked were smoldering, and 43.26% were sudden crises. Prior to 2020, ICM had typically found that smoldering crises accounted for 65% to 70% of the total.” Sudden crises are becoming  more common. 

The good news is, armed with information, you can certainly impact the outcome positively. In many cases, technology can help you plan and mitigate a crisis more quickly.

Top Business Emergency & Safety Trends for 2024

Emerging data from 2023 indicates some changes regarding the most common emergencies, regardless of business size. Considering how these events might impact your organization, revising your preparedness plan to include new threats, and finding solutions to tackle them should they happen will ensure you aren’t caught off guard and that your people are safe.

Supply Chain and Workforce Interruption

As global events unfold, many goods and transportation channels continue to be disrupted. Particularly for the manufacturing industry, these events can slow down production, cause shortages, and impact business continuity. This in turn impacts everyone down to other businesses that need goods to function.

Additionally, workforce shortages can also cause interruptions. This can be seen across industries, and can be of particular concern in manufacturing and healthcare, as less people on the job can directly influence safety.

How you can prepare:

  • Create contingency plans
    • For supply chain disruption from natural disasters, cyber attacks, and civil unrest/war
    • Staffing shortages that impact productivity and safety
  • Utilize technology

Physical Danger

When was the last time you participated in a fire or active shooter drill? For many, they likely cannot remember.

Unfortunately building emergencies and physical danger events are becoming more common place. Fire, hazardous materials, flooding, violence, and power outages are a reality for almost all industries and businesses.

Fortunately, thoughtful planning and communication ahead of time can ensure you and your teams are prepared to get to safety as quickly as possible.

How you can prepare:

  • Revisit emergency plans and update these on a schedule
  • Use June’s National Safety Month and September’s National Preparedness month to educate your employees
  • Include your emergency plan as part of new employee orientation 
  • Utilize technology
    • Platforms with geo-targeting can ensure the right people get critical messages
    • Chat features in mass notification systems help business leaders and first responders assess situations in real time

Climate Change and Natural Disasters

According to, in 2023, “the U.S. experienced 28 separate weather and climate disasters costing at least 1 billion dollars. That number puts 2023 into first place for the highest number of billion-dollar disasters in a calendar year.” These included intense winter storms, wildfires, drought, heat waves, flooding, tornadoes, hurricanes, and hail. “2023 was also deadly, causing at least 492 direct or indirect fatalities—the 8th most disaster-related fatalities for the contiguous U.S. since 1980.”

As businesses face natural disasters that used to be uncommon, there are several steps you can take to keep people safe.

How you can prepare:

  • Use a site like RiskFactor to plan for the types of events common to your area
  • Revise your emergency plan based on new threats
  • Utilize technology
    • Plan for more remote work
    • Include platforms for quick communication

Cyber Attacks and Impact of AI

Astra reports that “Cybersecurity statistics indicate that there are 2,200 cyber attacks per day, with a cyber attack happening every 39 seconds on average. In the US, a data breach costs an average of $9.44M, and cybercrime is predicted to cost $9.5 trillion by 2024. Moreover, with the explosion of generative AI (besides chatGPT as well!), the current 2200 daily attacks, are expected to not only multiply manifold but become far more individualized.”

While the risk of an attack on your organization is bad enough, statistics show that crimes against industries that most of us reply on are on the rise. The FBI’s most recent reports show that more than a third of ransomware attacks in the U.S. impact critical infrastructure, with healthcare and public health seeing the highest number of attacks. A report by Waterfall Security also found that high-impact attacks on industrial operations rose by 140% from 2021 to 2022.

But again – there are steps you can take to protect your business and stakeholders.

How you can prepare:

  • Rethink information flow at your business and what protocols could be updated
  • Consider how AI might impact cybersecurity and factual information, and how employees can know who and what are accurate
  • Provide ongoing training on existing and emerging threats
  • Utilize technology

A Final Thought

Even though threats are increasing, so are solutions for mitigating them. Using the opportunity to update preparedness plans, communicate and train staff, and promote efficiency with technology will ensure your business will weather the storm.

Looking for an ally to support your company’s emergency preparedness?

RedFlag’s award-winning mass notification system features multi channel notifications including Microsoft Teams, has geo-targeting ability, meets SOC II requirements, and has SSO capabilities. We’d love to show you how we can help. 

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