Tenant Handbook

Severe Weather

When severe weather conditions become apparent, the U.S. Weather Bureau describes conditions by two (2) classifications, a Watch or a Warning. This applies to the reporting of severe thunderstorms, the approach of weather conditions favoring the formation of tornadoes, a hurricane condition, a winter storm condition, etc. A Watch becomes effective when atmospheric conditions are right to produce the particular weather phenomenon. A Warning means that the weather condition has been spotted and prompt action must be taken for safety.

In the event these conditions do exist, keep radios or televisions tuned to local news and weather reports. The following guidelines should be kept in mind:

  • Move away from building perimeter and exterior glass. If the windows in your offices are supplied with blinds, close the blinds (this will provide protection from broken glass).
  • Do not panic. Keep calm. If trapped in an outside office, seek protection under a desk.
  • If instructed to evacuate, lock all desk drawers and take all items of value with you. Use a route that is in the building interior and stay away from large expanses of glass and windows.
  • Use the stairwells rather than the elevators.
  • Do not return to your office until advised to do so.

Tornadoes occur in many parts of the world and in all 50 states. Tornado frequency is at its peak in April, May and June. The potential threat is most dangerous in the continental plains and along the Gulf Coast of the United States.

NOTE: Most tornadoes last only four or five minutes.

Tornado Watches

Are issued by the National Weather Service for areas threatened by tornadoes and severe thunderstorms. These watches specify a time period and area where tornado probabilities are highest. During a watch, look for threatening weather and stay tuned to radio and television for more information.

Tornado Warnings

Are issued by local National Weather Service offices when a tornado has been sighted or indicated by radar. Warnings describe the area that could be affected. If a WARNING is issued, take cover immediately.

Where to Go

Stay away from windows, glass doorways and outside walls. Close doors to the exterior offices and go to interior small rooms or into inside hallways. Protect your head and crouch down making yourself as small a target as possible.

After the Storm

  • Inspect your area for damage.
  • Check immediately for electrical problems and gas leaks. 
  • Report your findings to the Property Management Office. 
  • Cooperate in the cleanup of debris.
  • During repairs and cleanup, wear shoes and gloves.
  • Follow directions from Building Emergency Personnel and Public Safety Officials.


An earthquake is caused by a sudden slip on a fault. Stresses in the earth’s outer layer push the sides of a fault together. Eventually enough stress builds up and the rocks slip suddenly, releasing energy waves that cause the shaking we feel during an earthquake.

Earthquakes come in clusters. In any earthquake cluster, the largest one is called the main shock; anything before it is called a foreshock and anything after is called an aftershock. We must be prepared for aftershocks and the damages they can cause.

These procedures are designed to assist in preparing for an earthquake before it occurs and provide guidelines to follow during the disaster. Preparedness is the key to safety and a quick recovery.

Before the Earthquake


Non-structural hazards must be identified and every effort must be made to correct potentially dangerous situations. This includes securing furniture such as book cases, wall units or other items that could fall and injure someone or block an evacuation route. In some cases, this may not be feasible. For this reason, awareness of these problems is of the utmost importance.

Assess Your Work Area

  • Windows/Glass: If your work station is near a window or glass partitions, decide where you will take cover to avoid being injured by flying glass.
  • Heavy Objects: If your work station is near a temporary wall or partition, make sure it is securely anchored.
  • Loose Objects: If you have materials stored on top of cabinets or shelves, determine if these items should be secured or moved.


During an earthquake you will be safer inside the building than you are outside. If you do feel a tremor, you should: Duck, Cover, and Hold.

DUCK – Duck or drop down to the floor.

COVER – Take cover under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture. If that is not possible, seek cover against an interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms. Avoid danger spots near windows, hanging objects, mirrors or tall furniture.

HOLD – If you take cover under a sturdy piece of furniture, hold on to it and be prepared to move with it. Hold the position until the ground stops shaking and it is safe to move.

DO NO ENTER OR EXIT the building during the shaking. There is danger of falling glass and debris.

DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS. Elevators will automatically move to the next floor in direction of travel and open.

IF YOU ARE OUTDOORS, move away from buildings, falling objects, and power lines.


BE PREPARED FOR AFTERSHOCKS. If you are outside, do not return to your office until authorized.
CHECK FOR INJURIES and administer first aid if necessary (and if qualified). Do not move victims unless absolutely necessary.

REPLACE TELEPHONE HANDSETS that have been shaken off, but do not use the telephones except to report fires or medical emergencies.

DO NOT USE ELEVATORS. When exiting, make sure that the exit is safe to use.

Earthquake Evacuation

  • Determine in advance all stairwells and alternate exits from your work location and the routes you will follow to reach that exit in the event an evacuation is necessary. Also establish your alternate routes to be used in the event your first route is blocked or unsafe to use.
  • Do not evacuate unless told to do so or danger is imminent. 
  • Follow instructions given by emergency personnel.
  • Walk, DO NOT RUN, and keep noise to a minimum.



  • DO NOT push or crowd. Use handrails in stairwells and move to the inside (most continuous handrail).
  • Move to your designated evacuation area unless otherwise instructed. Check doors for heat before opening.
  • Assist non-ambulatory, visually impaired and hearing-impaired persons if they are present.
  • If you have relocated away from the building, DO NOT return until you are notified that it is safe to return.


What If You Are in an Elevator

  • Many elevators are designed to go to the nearest floor in the direction of travel and open.
  • However, some elevators will stop in any moderate earthquake. Building maintenance personnel will contact each elevator car as quickly as possible and advise you how rescue will occur.
  • Upon being rescued, take directions from the Floor Warden of that floor.
  • If you have a medical problem or other emergency, call the phone numbers listed in the elevator car. If immediate help is needed, call 911

When Should You Go Home?

  • It is in your best interest in the event of an earthquake or community wide disaster during normal working hours that all employees should remain at work.


Before a tropical storm or hurricane enters the Gulf of Mexico there are some guidelines on how to protect yourselves, your premises and contents.

Always keep the contact information for your firm’s Floor Wardens and emergency contacts up to date with the property management office. This will insure timely contacts from property management, giving you important emergency information.

Should your firm require on-site personnel during the storm, advise them to maintain an inventory of emergency equipment to be used to include but not be limited to the following:

  • Flashlights and fresh batteries
  • First-aid kits to treat minor injuries caused by flying glass
  • Transistor radios for keeping abreast of weather and highway conditions 
  • Ice Chests
  • Water Coolers 
  • Thermal Bottles
  • Non-perishable Food 
  • A Can Opener
  • At Least One Change of Clothing

Please note that Avison Young reserves the right to close the building for your safety, absent a governmental directive. In either instance, it is very important that all building occupants take the following steps prior to leaving:

  • All mini-blinds should be opened and raised.
  • Desks, table tops and all windowsills should be cleared of books, loose papers, and other items. These items should be placed in secured locked drawers or file cabinets.
  • All artwork and furniture should be moved away from windows. Personal items should be stored in a safe area or removed from the building.
  • Waterproof tarpaulin or heavy plastic can be useful for covering desks, computers, and filing cabinets. 
  • Bookcases in offices with exterior windows should be turned (if possible) to face the wall.
  • Computers and related equipment should be backed up, powered-down and unplugged. 
  • All lights should be turned off.
  • All electronic equipment should be removed from offices with windows and secured in an area near the core of the building (if possible).
  • All office doors should be shut and locked when possible.

Avison Young will maintain limited staffing at the property throughout this event. We are fully prepared to take appropriate actions, which includes but is not limited to the following:

  • The building roof and grounds will be cleared of debris. 
  • Storm drains will be cleaned and locked down.
  • Emergency generators serving emergency lighting and fire/life safety systems will be serviced and fuel tanks filled.
  • Emergency supplies and equipment to include, plywood (for installation in the event of window or door damage), sandbags, portable radios, two-way radios, tarps, plastic, and miscellaneous tools are stocked in ample quantities.
  • We are committed to communicating and working closely with you as we prepare for the possibility that we will be affected by this hurricane. Please free to call the management office with any questions or suggestions you might have.

Please note we will utilize the Send Word Now / LiveSafe emergency alert system to advise tenant contacts and other designated emergency contacts of important developments should the need arise.