Travel Safety Guide
Travelling to a hostile environment can be a daunting task. Whether you're heading to a region that's politically unstable, experiencing conflict or has high levels of crime, it's important to take measures to ensure your safety. Here are some tips for staying safe while travelling in a hostile environment.
Do Your Research
It is essential to thoroughly research and understand the potential risks before travelling to a hostile environment as there are many hidden dangers that could be encountered. Firstly, and most importantly don’t take your safety for granted; we all automatically assume we are safe when we travel but in a new and unstable environment this may not be the case. So, look into where you are visiting and find out more about the local customs and rules.
Another risk is not planning ahead; when in a hostile location there may be limited access to resources, so identifying where available resources are can help you avoid being left in a vulnerable circumstance. It is also important to think about what resources you may need to take with you, as not every location has all the things available to use that we have at home.
If you do not have the right insurance can pose a significant risk if you are faced with a medical emergency, personal liability or theft. Choosing and reviewing the correct insurance policies that specifically cover the risks associated when travelling to a hostile environment is essential.
Not understanding what to do when faced with a potentially dangerous situation in a hostile environment is also a risk worth protecting against. You are more vulnerable to dangers, such as crime, political unrest or health hazards, when you lack the relevant knowledge of these situations. Thorough research, self-education and seeking guidance from specialist are fundamental to understanding what to do in various situations, minimising the risk, enhancing personal safety and facilitating a more informed travel experience.
When travelling to a new or hazardous place, one method of staying informed is through relevant social media. The key to getting the most out of social media is to pick the appropriate accounts to pay attention to and follow. If you are in a country where social media is less trust worth, a more reliable way to stay informed while in a hostile environment, is to gather information from local sources who can receive up-to-the minute and current intelligence.
To support our customers further, when you enrol on one of our HET courses, we strongly advise downloading particular applications that are available while travelling to hostile environments, that have the ability to send alarm signals, communications, geographical maps, and identify different countries' threats depending on where you are.
But what if your mobile phone breaks? Or if you are in a region where satellite phones are limited? Having a suitable and thorough communications plan and itinerary in place will allow you to be well equipped for the unexpected; always plan for a change in circumstances.
Importance of Training
Hostile environment training has a multitude of benefits: firstly, and most importantly, it can keep you alive and give you assurance and confidence in what you have been taught. Knowledge is power when visiting any new location.
Insurance underwriters and other organisations may mandate awareness programmes that cover lifesaving techniques as part of their due diligence. Professional organisations have a duty of care to keep their personnel trained when they are working abroad in risk elevated situations. However, a small number of travellers enrol in a HET course because they voluntarily wish to learn lifesaving abilities and information.
When you attend a HEAT or HEFAT course you come away not only with the skills to save your life, but it will also provide a peace of mind to your family and friends whilst you are away. Every stakeholder in your life, including your organisation, insurance company and HET, will feel secure in the fact you have gained the necessary skills to survive and return safely. Participating in a HET course is directly for you, but indirectly for them too.
Our top three tips would be:
- Plan = Always be prepared for the unexpected.
- Train = Buy into your planning and training.
- Don’t be complacent = Be alert and aware of the risks and threats.
Everyone will benefit differently from different aspects in our training. Some may be more suited to learning navigation techniques, while others may benefit from assessing threat risks and how to mitigate them.
Benchmark HEAT and HEAFAT Training
Pre-travel safety and security planning is the most valued and important part of any visit to a high-risk location. Our Hostile Environment Training will make your life easier in any potentially hostile location, providing you with the necessary tools to go about your daily tasks by implementing some simple procedures. Remember, safety should always be your top priority when travelling to a hostile environment. For more information or to discuss your requirements contact our team today.