Surviving Disaster: Preparedness for hurricanes like Florence

September 20, 2018 David Cahn

I have lived on the east coast of the US near the water where hurricanes are an annual risk and in tornado alley in the Southeast where the unexpected becomes a reality at any moment. Before and after each disaster, such as the recent hurricane Florence, food stores, home improvement and hardware stores are a beehive of activity, helping people to prepare and recover from any damage to their business or home. These businesses plan for disasters by pre-positioning supplies and loading trucks, having them ready to go to a disaster location at a moment’s notice with everything from batteries to tools to cleaning supplies.

Process manufacturing industry businesses need to do the same so that plants can keep operating and orders delivered. The key is to make sure your business has the right level of inventory of raw materials or secondary suppliers ready to bring materials to the plant if needed. Plus, having back-up carriers or a secondary transportation mode available to move products and orders is a must.

These industries are essential to just about every aspect of the U.S. economy, with more than 96% of all manufactured goods directly touched by the process manufacturing industry. These manufacturers, depending on the obvious locations, go to great lengths to prepare for extreme weather events. As an example, according to the American Chemistry hurricane preparedness document preparation is the key to addressing the potential dangers of hurricanes.

In conjunction, Elemica’s Digital Supply Network facilitates disaster planning and preparedness by allowing all supply chain trading partners to coordinate inventory, supplies and shipments. Being proactive is the best way to mitigate risk in your supply chain. The best way to mitigate risk is to have end-to-end visibility across the entire supply chain. This includes visibility across all trading partners, suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, customers — from raw materials to end delivery.

Because of Hurricane Florence, regular shipping lanes and associated infrastructure have suffered extensive damage, making them impassable. With Elemica’s Logistics Management solution that provides visibility to orders in transit in real-time, businesses that have experienced damage will know when their products will arrive and where they will arrive if alternative locations need to be used.

The recent hurricane coupled with the scarce capacity issue has put an even greater strain on transportation companies. Having the ability to utilize a Digital Supply Network with thousands of carriers connected, means shippers can find the capacity they need to get their products delivered.

When all supply chain participants are connected to a Digital Supply Network to conduct commerce, collaborate and communicate in real-time, businesses gain a centralized view of their end-to-end supply chain through which early warning signs of a disruption can be seen.

Proactive notifications for missing business signals, such as the loss of a transportation mode or facility or the failure to respond to a request, can be seen by all connected to the network, allowing others to respond so a disruption is avoided.

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