This blog recently discussed how a majority of small business owners do not consider themselves at-risk for experiencing an event on the same scale as Hurricane Sandy. However, the tornado that ripped through Oklahoma earlier this week further underlines the importance of being prepared at all times.
Moore, Oklahoma, which is near Oklahoma City, was ravaged by a level EF-5 tornado, with winds between 200 and 210 miles per hour. Reports said that the tornado was 1.3 miles wide - the equivalent of 22 football fields. At least 24 people were killed, according to the state medical examiner's office.
Moore Fire Chief Gary Bird told CNN that rescue efforts would include up to three searches of damaged pieces of property, ensuring that any survivors are found and nothing is overlooked.
Resident Steve Wilkerson told CNN that he had experienced tornadoes before, but not to the extent of what happened on Monday.
"I still can't believe this is happening," he said. "You work 20 years, and then it's gone in 15 minutes."
Lieutenant governor Tom Lamb told the news source that Oklahoma is a tough state and residents of the Moore and Oklahoma City area are strong. This is not the first time residents and business owners have had to work past such a situation, as a tornado struck in 1999. The path of destruction was eerily similar to the recent storm, although the earlier storm had wind speeds recorded up to 318 mph.
While not every small to medium-sized business needs to prepare for a tornado, owners should find a comprehensive commercial property insurance that accounts for severe weather. For organizations located in Arizona, California and Nevada, working with commercial insurance agents who understand the area can guarantee that a policy is found that is applicable to the business' location.