Travel industry training staff to deal with terrorist incidents
Holidaymakers also urged to watch new film to help stay safe
The travel industry is providing training for staff working in the UK and overseas to help keep holidaymakers safe this summer.
Over 23,000 employees have attended sessions, which include advice on how to spot suspicious items and activity, as well as what to do in the event of a major incident.
The programme is being run in partnership with the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) which has created a short presentation offering travel companies an easy to deliver counter terrorism awareness product.
This covers the core CT guidance needed by staff working in a Crowded Place at home or abroad. The product - funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office - includes three new films which show staff what to expect and how to respond in the safest way to the terrorist threat:
Identify and Respond to Suspicious Behaviour
Identify and Deal with Suspicious Items
How to React to Firearms or Weapons Attacks
The presentation is accompanied by a helpful leaflet (PDF, 178KB, 2 pages) which can be printed and distributed as an aide memoire for staff and refers to the ACT: Action Counters Terrorism guidelines for reporting any suspicious behaviour or items.
In addition to the industry training, holidaymakers travelling abroad this summer are also being urged to watch a new video designed to help keep them safe in the event of a terrorist attack.
This film is four minutes long and outlines key actions to take if terrorists strike.
While there is no specific intelligence that British holidaymakers will be targeted this summer the launch of the film, and supporting information, is part of a general campaign to raise awareness among the public. It highlights the steps people can take to minimise the impact of an attack – including knowing the local emergency services number.
The central message is Run, Hide, Tell, which was first launched by UK police in December 2015 after attacks in Paris. It was recently re-issued to the public by officers during London’s Borough Market incident.
The original film to launch Run, Hide, Tell was based in an office block setting but the new travel-related videos show an event taking place in a hotel.
In June 2015, 30 British travellers were among 38 killed by terrorists at a resort in Tunisia. UK police were determined to work with the travel industry to do everything possible to learn from the tragedy.
Detective chief superintendent Scott Wilson, National Coordinator for Protect and Prepare, says:
The chances of being caught up in a terrorist incident are still low, but sadly we have seen atrocities take place in the UK and abroad. So it is important everyone - staff and customers - stays alert and knows what to do if the worst was to happen.
Understandably people want to go on holiday to relax and enjoy themselves, but we need to remain vigilant at all times.
We want people to think of this in the same way they do the safety film airlines show before take-off. They don’t expect anything bad to happen but it is a sensible safety precaution to show people what to do.
A few minutes of your time spent watching the video before you go on holiday could save you and your loved ones. And find out in advance the local emergency number. For EU counties it is 112. Other numbers can be found on the foreign and commonwealth Office website.
Nikki White, Director of Destinations and Sustainability from ABTA adds:
We recognise the importance of raising awareness and providing clear guidance for our Members and their employees. We know that customers would look to those staff working in their hotels and resorts to take the lead and respond quickly to an emerging situation.
Representatives of the travel industry, taking part in the training, have responded positively.
We will continue to work closely with the police to make sure we are doing all we can to help raise awareness of these messages.
The key advice is:
Run – to a place of safety. This is better than trying to surrender or negotiate.
Hide – it is better to hide than confront. Barricade yourself in, turn your phone to silent and only when it is safe to do so…
Tell – the authorities by calling the emergency number – 112 for the EU. For other numbers check here
Introduction to Counter Terrorism Awareness
This short presentation incorporates three new CT films into the core guidance needed by those who work in a Crowded Place, whether in the UK or abroad. In around sixteen minutes it will show your staff what to expect and how to respond in the best and safest way to the terrorist threat, specifically:
- How to Identify and Respond to Suspicious Behaviour
- How to Identify and Deal with Suspicious Items
- How to React to Firearms or Weapons Attacks