Monthly Archives: March 2015

April Showers bring Spring Emergencies

With spring fast approaching (finally!), archives must ensure they are prepared for any disasters caused by the change in the weather. Monitor surface runoff water, or overland flow, near your facility. Overland flow happens when water from meltwater or precipitation flows over the ground. This is caused by heavy precipitation and/or soil saturation. Check the Alberta Flood Map Application to see if your facility is located on or near overland flow areas.

River flows and levels can also fluctuate during this time of year. Become familiar with which water basin your facility is located in and monitor flow rates and water levels in your area.


The Louise Bridge during the Spring Flood of 1915. CCG-3034, City of Calgary, Corporate Records, Archives.

Check eavestroughs and drainage around your building for debris that may have accumulated over the winter. Debris, such as leaves or litter, may prevent water from being redirected from your facility and may cause water to enter your building.

Thunderstorms are also common during this time of year and may affect the electricity in your building. Power surges can cause data errors and loss of memory in computers and damage other electronic devices. Surge bars divert excess electrical energy from your electronic devices to prevent any damage. Ensure your facility utilizes surge bars for all of your electronic devices.

Do you have any advice on how archives can prepare for spring weather? Let us know in the comments!

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Business Continuity Awareness Week

bcawThis coming week (March 16-20) is Business Continuity Awareness Week! Business continuity planning is an important part of emergency planning as it focuses on how to resume vital services quickly in the event of an emergency. The theme for this week is exercising and testing plans. The Business Continuity Institute’s (BCI) awareness week includes some interesting events and resources that may be of interest to archival institutions:

BCI is an international organization established in 1994 to support individuals and organizations with business continuity through resources and certification programs. Their Business Continuity Awareness Week is a great opportunity for archival institutions to review and test their business continuity plan!

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Project by the Numbers

ASA’s Flood Advisory Programme is six months into its two year project! This is some of the work we have completed so far:

  • Travelled 3834 kilometres
  • Treated 625 items
  • Conducted 10 site assessments
  • Created 10 work plans
  • Placed 9 supply orders
  • Posted 8 blog entries
  • Created 5 online resources (ASA’s Flood Assistance Page)
  • Wrote 4 condition reports
  • Hired 3 contractors to complete work at heavily impacted sites
  • Attended 3 archives week events
  • Filmed 3 how-to videos
  • Attended 3 webinars
  • Wrote 2 newsletter articles
  • Wrote 2 board reports
  • Hosted 1 expert from CCI to advise on the treatment of damaged records
  • Attended 1 workshop

We are looking forward to the next 18 months!

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