In most emergency situations, whether instigated by humans or caused by a natural disaster, the reactions of security personnel are just that—reactions. A proactive approach, on the other hand, yields better results.

Business Continuity Planning Is SMARRT

Business Continuity Planning
How do you keep your business operating if it becomes a crime scene or disaster location for weeks at a time?

Recent natural disasters and tragedies have spurred more companies to develop business continuity plans. Such plans include tabletop exercises, drills, and working with skilled security partners that can provide hands-on training and the benefit of experience and best practices.

According to Sunstates president Glenn Burrell, “Business continuity plans work best when everyone in an organization is invested in security, from top to bottom, management to mailroom. An organization is a community. If everyone looks out for each other, keeps their eyes open, and then communicates, the organization benefits. Many potential crisis situations can be defused before they explode. This kind of cooperation doesn’t happen overnight, however. It takes practice and education.”

Sunstates has developed its own business continuity program to ensure its ability to take care of clients in a crisis situation, including creation of a special response team.

Now operating in 14 states, Sunstates Mutual Aid Rapid Response Team (SMARRT) consists of 60 specially trained and equipped team members whose primary focus is the protection of clients’ personnel and assets and immediate containment of incidents. SMARRT is ready for rapid deployment at a moment’s notice, available only to clients.

Active Shooter Training

Among the manmade crises plaguing the nation, active shooters have become a high-profile threat for a wide range of organizations, from schools to businesses. Training individuals how to deal with this type of situation is critical to preventing loss of life.

Moreover, the ways that law enforcement engages such situations are evolving, and organizations should evolve as well. Instead of staging outside, for example, police are now directed to enter the scene and engage the suspect.

But how do organizations keep themselves up-to-date with current best practices? By partnering with experienced security professionals.

In July, Sunstates participated in active shooter training scenarios at a middle school in Colorado and at Central Carolina Community College in Sanford, N.C., conducting live drills where volunteers acted as shooting victims. In both cases, the training went well, and everyone from EMTs to the school administration and faculty gained valuable experience.

Sunstates president Glenn Burrell says this type of training is the best available. “Planning is absolutely key so that if such a tragedy were to occur, everyone knows what they have to do.”

College President Bud Marchant asserted that the exercise was not only vital to campus security but also beneficial to everyone involved. “It allows local law enforcement and emergency services personnel to become familiar with the campus while getting excellent training. And it ensures that the college has procedures in place in the case of such an event.”