No EP agent’s toolbox is complete without an emergency response plan. Executive protection specialists become more resilient and turn into bulletproof professionals as soon as they devise an ERP. Emergency response plans comprise the actions for responding to emergencies, disasters, and interruptions.
The executive protection niche is a business of its own. All companies require a certain level of contingency planning, and so too with EP. This industry is the epitome of emergencies that occur everywhere, indoor and outdoor, in vehicles and hotels. Anywhere a principal goes, a looming threat follows.
Moreover, the companies and individuals EP agents have sworn to protect find themselves in the most challenging situations of all.
Thus, an attentive executive protection agent always plans ahead, scanning for potential hazards. Some of the best plans anyplace in the world are composed of the following elements:
- Action steps in an emergency,
- Knowing whom to contact,
- Mitigating risks,
- Establishing resources to minimize loss.
Skipping any of these equals skipping them all.
The goal of an emergency response plan is to decrease human harm and damage to assets. In the context of EP, this means safeguarding the principal and protecting their property.
Just as importantly, a sound ER plan comprises staff members’ names who must implement emergency response plans. If you are running a team of 5 executive protection agents, decide on clear responsibilities for everybody. For instance, one agent drives the vehicle. Another one is responsible for the gear. A third one sits close to the client.
Last but not least, many principals have an entourage with them all the time. It’s the job of EP agents to shield them as well, as somebody could use them to get to the client.
An ideal ER plan succeeds in protecting the client, their physical infrastructure, staff, and family.
Building a Strong Emergency Response Plan
The best place to start creating an emergency response plan is by designing a risk assessment. And we wouldn’t be EP Wired if we hadn’t already written an in-depth beginner’s guide on the topic.
Any reliable risk assessment recognizes potential threats and hazards, analyzing their consequences. All organizations have weak spots. They just aren’t aware of them. And they can’t protect themselves if they don’t even realize that they are in danger.
Fortunately for you, you now know that understanding the company’s vulnerabilities is the initial step toward proactive ER planning.
There is a ton of emergency scenarios that executive protection agents could face. Here we bring you some of those:
- Active shooter,
- Hazardous substances,
- Electricity outage,
- Medical emergency,
- Bomb threat.
Not all of these have the same level of severity. Therefore, you should prioritize accordingly. For instance, let’s say somebody starts shooting at the principal. Simultaneously, there is an electricity outage. What should you address first? Well, hiding or responding to the active shooter is more critical in this example.
In case an urgent situation endangering lives occurs, having a list of emergency services contacts is crucial. Your emergency response plan should include this information as well.
For that purpose, we have created a short list of emergency personnel you should refer to:
- Hospitals and ambulance services,
- Mobile rescue squads and paramedics,
- Police department,
- Utility companies,
- Security services.
Depending on the emergency, you should have their contacts available at all times. You wouldn’t have to look it up on the internet. That’s the real value of risk assessments and emergency response plans. They rarely fail you.
We said rarely, not never.
Assessing Organizational and Personal Resources
Speaking of failure, how likely is it that your contacts will fail you? If you are working as a close protection agent in the developed world, you are pretty much good to go. However, if you are traveling abroad to offer your executive protection services, don’t get your hopes up.
In any case, your resources include systems, people, and equipment. Get those in order, and there isn’t much to worry about. Moreover, assessing the capacities and capabilities of your resources is something you can’t do without.
If you are skilled in handling resources, good for you. If not, here’s an EP Wired guide to develop your knowledge of EP gear. It’s arguably one of the vital components of modern executive protection services.
For your convenience, here is a summary of the resources to consider any way:
- Medical supplies,
- Mobile and rescue equipment,
- Ambulance services,
- Fire alarms, strobes, and extinguishers,
- Trained personnel.
Now that you have everything set up, is there something you are forgetting?
Exactly! Everyone needs to be familiar with the ER plan, not just the person producing it. That includes the entourage, staff, assistants, car drivers, and everyone else in the client’s proximity. They at least need to know the basics of how to react in case an emergency arises.
Lastly, experts think that the single most crucial step is reviewing your emergency response plan. We won’t go as far as to say that this is the case, but we advise against skipping it.
Continually revising and checking could prove beneficial in the long run. Situations change, emergencies develop, everything evolves, and so should your emergency response plan.
There is nothing revolutionary about a risk assessment or an ER plan. Actually, it’s a lot like money. If you have it, you aren’t too ecstatic about it. But if you don’t have it, your life turns into a nightmare.
The title of this article promises a bulletproof emergency response plan. Hopefully, it delivers on its promise. Yet, if an ER plan is to come to fruition, you need to take the following steps:
- Recognize risks and threats,
- Assess your resources and that of your client,
- Collect contacts of emergency services,
- Get your team in on the ER plan,
- Have trained and experienced personnel around you,
- Practice revising your emergency response plan regularly.
And if you ever get tired of completing these few steps, remember that they are saving the lives of the people around you. Or at least, they could help you have a more carefree work life. If you don’t trust us, ask the celebrities whose daily routine got hijacked.
Because don’t forget that emergency response plans also help you deal with interruptions. And getting pied is awfully inconvenient.