Spring World 2015

Conference & Exhibit

Attend The #1 BC/DR Event!

Fall Journal

Volume 27, Issue 4

Full Contents Now Available!

Advice From A Risk Detective

A blog that looks at how we can handle the commonest risks at home, at school, at work, online and on the road, written by the risk detective herself. The blog is an offshoot of Searle's first book, Advice From A Risk Detective.
Oct 08
2014

We need better checklists.

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

The Dallas hospital treating the Ebola patient has just announced that the patient died.

The Liberian public health and airport security personnel in Liberia did their jobs, and checked outgoing passengers at three distinct checkpoints.  But airport personnel can do little when patients lie or the patient didn't know that what was thought to be malaria was actually Ebola.

Jul 29
2014

Travel Risk Is High Right Now

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

It's not just that airplanes have been disappearing, or shot down, or that the infectious disease Ebola is out of control in parts of Africa, or that Tel Aviv travel was suspended by major airlines when shelling came too close to the airport . Travel risk has always been an issue for corporations whose employees are spread round the globe.  In this morning's New York Times article, Joe Sharkey goes inside a gathering of corporate travel managers to better understand their concerns, including legal and ethical risks, given the last week or so of travel events.

 

Jun 23
2014

More Advice From A Risk Detective

Posted by Annie Searle in Untagged 

Annie Searle

 I finished a new article on insider threats a couple of weeks ago.  You can find it on our website (www.anniesearle.com) in the Research section, under "Articles by Annie."

I am on my to New York City via Boston tomorrow morning.  I'll be participating again this year in the Global Risk Forum hosted at New York University.  The theme of the forum is regional resilience, against a variety of growing threats that even highly prepared organizations now have to monitor.  I've been asked to contribute remarks around how even resilient firms can up their game at this time.

Apr 18
2014

Take Off the Blinders

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

Mar 26
2014

Seattle Disasters

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

 

NTSB: Helicopter rotated 360 degrees before crash

 

Jan 21
2014

Winter Weather Tips from FEMA

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

Another big storm is bearing down on the East Coast  --  so I thought I would post a link to FEMA's winter weather tips.
The building blocks of the tips for winter weather apply to those of us in other parts of the country as well.
If you keep a stash of extra batteries on hand, you're also likely to have created a family emergency plan and even perhaps to have 5-7 days of emergency food, medicine and other supplies on hand.    If you haven't found the time to take care of those items yet, pick a day this next week and get after it!  Once you've established the basics, it's a simple matter to check out the supplies once a year, replace anything that might have expired, and perhaps add a few more items to your stash labeled for emergencies.
Meanwhile, our thoughts go out to those on the East Coast, who've already gone through this once this month.

Jan 07
2014

Mother Nature Shows Us Once Again Who Is In Charge

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

Our son was home from The University at Albany for two weeks in December to celebrate the holidays with us.


 Now he's back in school experiencing this kind of weather.

Dec 05
2013

Give Thanks Any Day

Posted by Annie Searle in Untagged 

Annie Searle

Thanksgiving is the day we celebrate the day when Native Americans sat down with Pilgrims and ate together.  For some of us, it's a better holiday than all the others combined because we reflect upon just how much we have to be thankful for.

Team Rubicon in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti

But there's no reason we can't recognize and celebrate unselfish work every day.  Or any day.  Those of you who read me on Facebook may know how much I admire the veterans' volunteer organization called Team Rubicon and the work that these volunteers do during disasters.  They were early into both Haiti (above) and into  both the Philippines (below) and into the devastation in Washington, Illinois. 

Oct 28
2013

A great honor

Posted by Annie Searle in Untagged 

Annie Searle

Events near the end of October have a way of forcing me to choose among equally enticing prospects.  Rather than attend this year's Executive Women's Forum in Scottsdale, I flew to Reno to help present the 2013 Hall of Fame Awards & Gala for the International Network of Women in Emergency Management and Homeland Security.  The event is only three years old.  I was honored and amazed to be inducted in 2011, along with Eleanor Roosevelt and Clara Barton.  Last year's inductees were splendid.  And this year, we kept the bar high.
Two distinguished Washingtonians were honored:  Mary Schoenfeld, a pioneer in the field of emergency management and school crisis management.  She's been in the field over 30 years and has written 5 books and countless articles. She is an inspiration to each of us.  Here, she is pictured in the president of inWEM, Dr. Jacqueline McBride, who also hosted the evening's festivities.
Also honored in memoriam was Ben Dew from FEMA Region Xand prior to that, Washington State emergency management.  He is the author of the strategy we now call "Neighbor Helping Neighbor."  More than one person remembered him and his "Never give up" mantra during the evening.
And there were others who received awards that evening as well, including four of the women pictured below.  Left to right:  Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes (Red Cross), Cheryl (on behalf of Delta Sigma Theta), Fire Chief Toni B. Washington, Dr. Meloyde Batten-Mikens (2012 awardee), and Fire Chief Debra Prior.
Here's Mary Anne McKown, author/synthesizer extraordinaire for some of our finest national documents, including the National Response Plan, the National Response Framework, and the National Emergency Communications Plan.  That's just a small taste of the work she began when she left Booz Allen become a government employee after 9/11.
Different stories for each of the awardees, but overall you could say that each of these women understands public service, the notion of giving back on behalf of something larger than yourself, and a keen desire to leave the world a better place.

Oct 11
2013

Earthquake planning

Posted by Annie Searle in Advice From A Risk Detective

Annie Searle

In yesterday's operational risk seminar that I teach at the University of Washington, our guest speaker was UW seismologist and information scientist Bill Steele.  In the first hour of class, he used a presentation he had recently made to state government on the development of an alert system that could mitigate certain types of public safety issues during an earthquake.  I've seen parts of the presentation before, and was struck again by the message that is driven home: disaster preparedness reduces costs over the long run.  And it may also reduce business interruption costs by as much as 20%.  Despite these facts, we are a long way from having an effective earthquake alert system in this state that could provide up to 3 minutes of warning before we felt the shock; and that could also be used to stop trains and elevators, and alert schools so that children could drop, cover and hold.

In our seminar the previous week,  I had talked about neuroscientist Tali Sharot's book, The Optimism Bias: A Tour of the Irrationally Positive Brain.  For those of you who might be curious, I've included a link to her TED talk.