Marsh Urges Review of Business Continuity Plans after Russian Fires

August 23, 2010

Following the devastating peat land and forest fires in Russia and the resultant smog in Moscow and surrounding regions, Marsh has urged affected and potentially affected organizations to “review their current business continuity plans and insurance provision.”

According to Marsh, businesses should “immediately reassess their business continuity plans with employees, customers, suppliers and other relevant stakeholders. In addition, firms should review the terms and conditions of their insurance policies with their insurance brokers and claims representatives to identify whether coverage is in place for any losses.”

The bulletin points out that organizations, which “keep their business continuity and supply chain planning up-to-date, well-tested and flexible are better placed to cope with threats to their supply chains, the challenges of staff absence, and potentially severe financial implications than those businesses that have not.”

To reduce the potential impact of the fires, Marsh recommends that organizations consider the following:
— Whether current business and operations contingency plans address this event and its potential impacts
— Whether there is a potential for property damage to any location and if so, identify what steps should be taking to protect operations
— If there be damage to the property, do civil authority directions prevent or prohibit access to/from affected location(s)
— If disruption to suppliers or customers precludes receiving or selling products or services
— Becoming familiar with the contingency plans of third parties and related businesses, such as suppliers, logistics providers and the public infrastructure
— Alternative routes to market if goods cannot be moved in a timely manner
— Arranging provision for storage of excess goods, components/ ingredients and finished products, if necessary

In addition affected organizations should review the terms and conditions of their insurance policies to determine what coverages may apply. They should also “closely document all related financial losses to support any claims to be made under the applicable policies,” said Marsh.

Another area that may require review are those policy wording covering the “contamination and pollution terms of their property policies to understand the available coverage and limitations. They should also consider supply chain coverage that does not require the same property damage triggers as traditional all-risk property policies.”

Detailed advice about managing the business continuity, supply chain and insurance implications of the peat land fires, can be found on Marsh’s website:

Source: Marsh

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