The Unexpected Everywhere

Amy Campbell, Senior Editor

August 18, 2008

2 Min Read
The Unexpected Everywhere

We humans tend to take a lot of things for granted, even the simplicity of a daily routine. It's easy to wish away our time, to want to speed through the tedious, mundane tasks that consume much of our existence ... until the unexpected happens.

On Friday, a Kearney Mesa, Calif., self-storage facility suffered a surprise when a vehicle sideswiped a truck on Interstate 15, sending the truck hurling through the facility's chainlink fence to land upturned in one of its driveways. A bystander was injured by a shatter of debris, San Diego News 10 reported. The truck driver and passenger were also injured.

For most news readers, the details of the damage and fallout at the facility is merely an afterthought to this story—but not to us. The hearts of fellow storage professionals immediately go out to the site's staff and owner. Did they have insurance? Were any of the units affected? Was the injured bystander a tenant?

These startling moments are the reason it's critical that every storage business be amply covered with the appropriate insurance and be armed with an emergency plan. The insurance coverage is easy enough to address in most states. The plan takes considerably more thought. How do you respond when something goes awry on site, such as an injury, robbery, natural disaster or other unforeseen twist? And how do you deal with the onslaught of authoritative, legal or media attention that may immediately follow?

Rational thought can elude us during times of high stress, so make sure you have a plan, in writing, easily accessible to all employees at all times. It could literally mean the difference between life and death. Here are a few articles from the ISS archive that might help:

And here's a link to a previous blog with a checklist of tips:

This topic is particularly germane for me today, having received grim news this morning. Two good friends of mine lost their father to a motorcycle accident over the weekend. There's no way to prepare for a shock like that. While I grieve for their loss, I feel the unwelcome but familiar sting of a lesson we all learn: Our lives, so seemingly assured, are but fragile and unknowable. Everything can change in a hair's breadth of a second.

I try to remember this, as I mechanically clock the seconds of an hour or day I feel eager to discard. The moment around the corner never has a face, no matter how we strain to recognize it. All we can do is try to be prepared, in business and in our personal lives. Here's hoping your next unexpected moment is a happy one.

About the Author(s)

Amy Campbell

Senior Editor, Inside Self Storage

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