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Weather data is a vital FM tool

Precise weather information, especially in the winter months, is one of the most crucial data sources for keeping facilities safe for staff and visitors, according to Nikki Singh-Barmi, managing director of winter risk management specialist GRITIT.

Speaking at the company’s winter season conference, Singh-Barmi highlighted that many businesses are “caught out” by the increasingly unpredictable weather in the UK, and put themselves at risk by carrying out last minute gritting and snow clearance, and by failing to adopt an advance winter maintenance programme, delivered by an expert service provider. She said:

“A sophisticated level of meteorological data, from a specialist forecasting company, is essential, however if this is in the ‘wrong hands’, without the right knowledge and expertise, an organisation will still be at risk if an incident occurs. Implementing a reactive service, which may be self-delivered, or procuring a less robust service from an external provider, where the client is presented with the meteorological data, assesses the level of risk, and takes the decision to service or not, is irresponsible. Whatever the degree of risk, should personal injury arise as a result of an accident, any decision not to provide a gritting service based on lack of resource or cost-saving, would leave an organisation vulnerable to litigation, and have implications for insurers.

“Appropriately-allocated resources, achieved through an advanced winter maintenance plan and delivered by a reliable external specialist, with weather data from a reputable source to monitor the increasingly unpredictable UK weather, ensure that there are no huge holes left in budgets and that risks are significantly reduced.”

MeteoGroup weather reports are entered into GRITIT’s unique cloud-based solution NIMBUS to create a rigorous fully automated management system that precisely meets the client’s gritting and snow clearance requirements, yet which has the flexibility to provide bespoke solutions, for example on unmanned sites where a leak, or burst pipes, could pose an unexpected risk.

Singh-Barmi emphasised:

“Risk management cannot be a one size fits all solution, but it must be scientific and systematic, rather than based on an ad hoc decision.”

Mark White, regional director of MeteoGroup, added:

 “Our accurate and detailed weather forecasts aim to empower businesses to master the weather, providing unparalleled accuracy in short-term forecasting and adding an important capability to GRITIT’s services.”

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