Research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) found that 59% of SMEs do not have a contingency plan for extreme weather
In recent years, UK families and business owners have been left devastated by widespread flooding. Thousands of homes were evacuated and many were left distraught with no power over Christmas last year. A survey commissioned by FSB, found that 3,200 commercial properties were affected by flooding last year, with small businesses footing an average bill of £1,531 to cover damage. It was found that 29% of small businesses did not have the necessary insurance for loss of income or flood related damage.
66% of firms who were surveyed said that in the last three years, their business had been affected by snow, floods and droughts. Mike Cherry, national policy chairman at FSB, said: "With such extreme weather events on the increase, small businesses need all the help they can get to make sure they can stay open whatever the weather."
Businesses that were affected by recent extreme weather expressed that they encountered interruption to their staff and customers, as well as supplier issues and transport disruptions. The Federation of Small Businesses suggested that small businesses needed to prepare for extreme weather and recommended that business leaders read guidance by the Environment Agency on preparing for flooding.
In the guidance, the Environment Agency advised that by taking action to prepare for flooding, most businesses can save 20 - 90% on the cost of movable equipment and stock loss. With rain always on the way in the UK, SMEs should begin to plan for flooding before they drown in damage costs.