Winter risk management company to chart UK’s worst weather events, and offers its extreme weather toolkit

20th June, 2017
Facilities Show – Stand S920

The UK’s weather is unpredictable, from snow to storms, droughts to floods. With such extreme weather patterns looking set to continue, leading winter risk management business, De-ice, calls out to property and facilities managers to ‘be prepared whatever the weather, and whenever it hits’.

At this year’s upcoming Facilities Show, Vicky Lopez, founder and director of De-ice, will present on the theme of ‘extreme weather’. She will chart some of the country’s worst weather events, including the 1953 Storm of the Century, and the 1963 Big Freeze, and look at the severe impact they had on businesses, hospitals and schools. She comments:

“We cannot take the weather for granted; the UK is impacted increasingly by adverse weather events – all year round. It isn’t uncommon to hear about storms, floods and snow bringing the country to a grinding halt, and running up vast insurance bills. For example, the floods in Cumbria in November 2009 resulted in a £174m total bill for insurers. And that’s not including the overall cost to the economy of lost working hours, or retail trading.

“The time has come to reverse this trend, and to prepare ourselves, our businesses and our properties for whatever Mother Nature throws at us. Whether that means taking the necessary precaution to prevent wind damage to roofs tiles, setting up flood defences, fortifying walls or putting down salt, the time has come to take action. If the emergency planning is made, this will ensure the quick recovery of any business.

“I’d also argue greater investment is required from central and local government, to ensure that we have the best possible defences in place for when snow and ice are present. County Councils are responsible for all winter maintenance and have a legal duty to ensure the safety of the highway user. Local councils across the country need to protect their budgets to ensure they are able to provide an effective and efficient winter programme.”

Here, De-ice offers its outline toolkit for every business on preparing for weather extremes – helping to minimise the disruption to business and profits:

  • Have a disaster recovery plan in place – This could make all the difference and give you a head start in the recovery process – helping to get back to business, as quickly as possible.
  • Talk to your people – Consider your customer and staff needs at all times. Your employees are your greatest asset and ensuring their safety and wellbeing is paramount. Timing when to take action is also dependent on your business. Consider the access requirements of your staff and customers and ensure their safety at all times.
  • Be ahead of the game – Keep an eye on temperatures and the forecast. Gritting should be carried out when frost, ice or snow is forecast or when walkways are likely to be damp or wet and the floor temperatures are at, or below, freezing. The best time is before the frost settles. Salt doesn’t work instantly; it needs sufficient time to dissolve into the moisture on the ground.
  • Finally – Have a plan for everything – The extreme weather over the past few years shows the importance of having a plan for every type of natural disaster, from droughts, flooding to blizzards. Make sure you’ve got yours in place. After that, you need to communicate it to the relevant people.

Vicky Lopez adds: “We are not even half way through the summer, but – already – we are clearing the way for a safer winter, because we know the dangers that snow and ice can bring, and we’re keen to ensure our clients remain one step ahead.”



Notes to editors

About De-Ice
De-Ice is one of the UK’s longest-established and leading winter gritting and snow clearance specialists. The company provides winter maintenance services, helping to keep businesses, hospitals, schools and retail outlets safe and open during extreme weather. De-Ice is focused on ensuring customers’ sites are made safe and remain open during periods of adverse weather. It has the latest gritting equipment and expertly trained operatives.

The company has built a bespoke technology system which monitors the weather and triggers service delivery alerts. The system then tracks operatives through their PDAs, to evidence when service delivery has taken place.

In the event of a possible claim, De-Ice customers can rely on an extensive service audit trail in order to evidence that a site or an area was fully serviced.
For further information, please contact Katrina Suppiah at Publicite Ltd
E: k.suppiah@publicite.co.uk
T: 020 8543 6582