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News Release

Bangkok

POST RIOTS: A Greater Focus on Proactive Property Management Strategies Required

The loss and damage to several properties in Bangkok during the recent riots reflect the rising need for a greater focus on proactive property strategies.



31 May 2010 - During the recent riots in Bangkok, a number of buildings were damaged from fires set by some protesters. However, some of these buildings saw limited damage and managed to reopen shortly partly due to efficient property management, according to Jones Lang LaSalle, a professional services firm specializing in real estate.
 
Jones Lang LaSalle reports that from more than 30 office, retail and residential buildings that the Firm manages in Bangkok, two buildings were set on fire. These include Maleenont Tower along Rama IV Road and The Stock Exchange of Thailand Building along Ratchadapisek Road. The incidents in these two buildings were efficiently controlled, and thus, the properties witnessed limited damage and were able to resume operations within 48 hours.
 
Mrs. Suphin Mechuchep, Managing Director of Jones Lang LaSalle, said, ‘As the two buildings have been well managed, automatic fire fighting systems operated efficiently, minimizing damages from the recent fire incidents. In addition, other systems such as electricity, water supply, lighting and air-conditioning were all well-maintained by professional technical teams. For these reasons, the buildings could resume operations very quickly after the incidents.’
 
There are several measures that have to be taken in cases of emergency such as riots and terrorism, according to Mrs. Suphin. Apart from physical maintenance, more serious security and safety measures must be implemented. The security and cleaning staff must be instructed to pay full attention to unattended objects and should take the initiative to carefully inspect any vehicles parking in or around the buildings.
 
In addition, a plan for emergency is needed. The plan should include provisions of water supply, fuel for emergency power generators, and food and drinks for building management staff who may have to work or be on standby on site at all times.
 
Prior to the recent riots in Bangkok, Jones Lang LaSalle helped its clients develop an emergency escalation plan in response to the increasing unrest and the announcement from the government about possibilities of cutting off water and electricity supplies in the protest areas.
 
‘Emergency power supply in particular is needed to be provided at an adequate level to ensure not only that the buildings could still operate but also that IT servers of tenants within the buildings would not be affected,' said Mrs. Suphin.
 
The emergency escalation plan also covers effective communications, which will ensure that the building management staff understand and are clear about what actions to take in different scenarios, who to contact for help if needed and how to keep all parties updated of the developing situation, whether they be building owners, tenants or relevant authorities.
 
In addition, on-site staff must be trained to be prepared for emergency cases. More importantly, tenants or residents within buildings must be encouraged to participate in evacuation drills for such emergency cases as fires or earthquakes.
 
'The loss and damage to several properties in Bangkok during the recent riots reflect the rising need for a greater focus on proactive property strategies. Efficient property management is one of those strategies that could help minimize risks or losses from unexpected incidents,' said Mrs. Suphin.
 
Jones Lang LaSalle also suggests that landlords or building management committees review existing insurance policies for their properties to ensure adequate coverage in the event of damage from unforeseen situations.