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A Disaster Recovery Plan for the Australian National Herbarium


Reaction is the initial response to an emergency situation. If fire is involved, reaction will consist of evacuating the building in response to the fire alarm. If the emergency does not involve fire, reaction will consist of identifying the emergency, assessing the situation and reporting it to the relevant people. This will lead to actions being taken to protect staff and, if safe to do so, actions to stabilize the situation to minimize damage to the collection.

The reaction phase of any disaster response should also involve the planning of the recovery process.

3.1 Immediate Response

3.1.1 Fire

If fire alarms are activated, the following actions should be taken:

3.1.2 Non-Fire Emergency

Any person(s) discovering an emergency should take the following actions:

Identify the emergency

An emergency situation is any sudden occurrence that significantly affects, or threatens to affect, the safety of people or the physical condition of the collections or any part of the collections.

Assess the Situation

Note the following:

Report Emergency Incident (using Emergency Contacts in Appendix E)

Depending on the scale of the emergency, notify the relevant people, such as:

Immediate Actions

If human safety is threatened , the following actions may be necessary:

If human safety is not threatened , immediate actions may include:

Role of Collections Recovery Coordinator

Upon receiving a report of an emergency situation the Collections Recovery Co-ordinator should assess the situation by asking the following questions of the person reporting:

If everything has been done to ensure human safety, the Collections Recovery Co-ordinator should make the following inquiries:

Immediate stabilisation

If the hazard has not been contained and it is safe to enter the Collections area(s), the Collections Recovery Co-ordinator should initiate immediate stabilisation of the emergency situation, remembering that collection material should not be evacuated hastily at the time of an emergency (see underpinning principles section 1.3 ). Actions may include the following:

DO NOT attempt to rectify any malfunctioning piece of electrical equipment.

3.2 Planning the Recovery

After the evacuation, or after the emergency has been stabilised, the Collections Recovery Coordinator, should contact the Facilities Coordinator and all Salvage Controllers. In consultation with these members of the Disaster Response Team, the Collections Recovery Coordinator should devise a plan for the Recovery operation. The plan should consider:


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