Calling Dibs on Evacuation Assembly Points

  June 1, 2009

Emergency response plans often include an assembly point where facility occupants will gather once they have evacuated. In a suburban area, this can sometimes be the far end of the facility's parking lot, if it is large enough. In more densely populated urban areas however, facility executives should be mindful that they might not be the only facility to have a particular assembly point in mind.

In Chicago, for example, Millenium Park is a large open space in the heart of downtown. However, if all of the high rises in its vicinity are planning on using it during an emergency, even that large park will quickly fill beyond capacity during a wide-reaching event.

As part of emergency response planning, facility executives should reach out to neighboring buildings to make sure everyone is not planning on using the same landing spot. And if your facility is the one with the appealing courtyard or parking lot, it would be good thinking to reach out to neighbors to see if any of them have slated your space as an evacuation spot before several hundred people suddenly camp out on your doorstep without warning.


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