With the approach of Hurricane Irma, the League of SoutheasternCredit Unions offers credit unions with this checklist of thefollowing precautions to consider:

  • Make sure that your credit union has freshsupplies in your emergency supply kits including water,batteries, and that your employees are personally prepared. Your staff is your most valuable asset and if they are pre-occupiedwith their personal disaster recovery, they will not be able tohelp you meet your members' needs.
  • Cash is king during disasters. Consider increasing your cashorder and ATMs should be fully stocked.
  • Consider the likelihood of flooding in your area. Stormsurge can approach 10-15 feet, which could mean floodingsignificantly inland, particularly if you are near ocean-connectedwaterways. Raising all computers and networking equipment aboveground level may help reduce the risk of ruining workstations.Placing equipment on chairs or desks may be a good idea.
  • If you are near the forecasted track of the storm, secureitems outside the credit union that could become projectiles duringthe storm.
  • Make sure your roof drains for flat roofs, and that guttersare free of debris.
  • Park cars in safe areas. If you are near the forecastedtrack of the storm, move repos away from trees to a wide-openparking lot.
  • Make sure your list of emergency contact numbers and staffinformation is correct and current. This should include your dataprocessing vendor, IT support personnel, credit union withreciprocal processing agreements, etc. Include multiple numberswherever possible (i.e. cellular, land lines, home numbers, etc.)to increase the likelihood of getting through. If primarycommunication lines are down, the LSCU provides a Disaster Hot Linethat may be accessed 24/7 at www.lscu.coop for credit unions to provideupdates for staff.
  • Place plastic over equipment for protection ifstructural damage occurs. Simple garbage bags and some packing tapecan help prevent water damage. Of course, be sure that theequipment is off and unplugged before covering with plastic toavoid overheating.
  • If you have a generator, test it to ensure it workingproperly and that your fuel is topped off and your fuel re-suppleris ready.
  • Ensure that your backup systems are workingproperly and take at least one copy of your server's dataoffsite on the last day before the storm hits. Ensure thatyou have access to the CD-ROMs and other media required to installyour core data processing apps from scratch. These, plus yourbackups should help to get your core systems operational in theevent of a total loss.

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