Major Weather Events and Power Interruptions
Being prepared for an emergency is a real and ongoing objective at Abacus. Many people still recall the severe ice storm and cold weather that covered Ontario just before Christmas 2013 – Toronto was totally shut down for days! A less intense and shorter duration storm occurred in April 2018. Then there was the power failure that blacked out Toronto and much of Eastern North America for many days in 2003. And it is not unreasonable to expect that there may be similar events in the future
However, the comprehensive approach to safety and security taken by Abacus ensured that these events and storms were virtually non events for Abacus and its customers. Abacus will of course continue to be as well prepared as possible for future events of this kind.
Perhaps the most significant of these events was the 2013 ice storm in Ontario. As soon as power from the utility was interrupted, the Abacus on site emergency natural gas- fired electrical generator started and all building systems continued to operate normally. Most importantly, the heating and lighting systems continued to function, and the risk of freezing sprinkler system or other water pipes was totally avoided. The emergency generator could have continued to run indefinitely. While the emergency generator has come on many times during power interruptions, never was it more important.
The 2013 storm truly tested Abacus, and also showed Abacus staff at its best. To complement the uninterrupted heat and light systems on the site, Abacus staff cleared ice from all door locks and from around all exterior doors so that any customer who came on site could gain access to their unit. Less than 12 hours after the storm ended, Abacus was operating normally, and as if the storm had never occurred. This kind of security and service is rare in the self storage industry. The ice storm clearly demonstrated that self storage security is more than having locked doors and a security gate.
The day after the 2013 ice storm in 2013, it was great to see the relief on our customers’ faces when they drove in and saw that their belongings were indeed safe and secure.
During that event, Jane and her staff, and David (in charge of maintenance) went beyond the call of normal duty to ensure that Abacus continued to operate smoothly and safely. They are a big reason that Abacus is a leader in the self storage industry.