Travel Safety Training

Try to Visualise the Following Scenario:

“It was like a towering inferno. We were screaming; we were terrified.

We dropped everything. Shoes, phones, we were running for our lives.

We were just running for our lives, shoes off, following this young boy, who led us down through a labyrinth of back passageways and under the burning building. Outside there was a stampede – people were running everywhere; the police were coming in. It looked like the end of the world.

I was shocked; just so shocked. I was barefoot and crying all the way home. I was sure people must have burned in their rooms. The hotel handled this incredibly well.”

Actual Scenario:

This is the real-life testament of a lucky survivor of a burning inferno in a building that was modern and considered to be iconic, only a couple of years ago. Perhaps ask yourself – would you know what to do, if you were in the building?

Better still, would you know what to do at 04:10am, when suddenly you are awoken by what seems to be a large bang, far off in the distance, but it wasn’t! The bang was here and now – it has happened just 2 floors below your room!

You’re now disturbed from your sleep; your heart is racing and your mind is in spinning mode. Outside you can hear people screaming and shouting; total confusion lies beyond your door. As you look to the door of your room, you begin to process the situation. Suddenly, the lights go out, so all you have right now is the faint green light from the emergency fire system.

What do I do? I can’t sit here; do I leave the room and join the chaos outside? You now begin to smell the smoke, as it finds it way underneath your door, which tells you that if you leave, you will enter a corridor filled with smoke. How will you locate the fire exits now? How will you traverse the corridors filled with acrid smoke?

Think, think! My mind is racing once again, overwhelmed with so many questions. Did I see the fire exit sign? Which way was it from my door? Which floor am I on? Where did I put my shoes? It’s so dark in this room and the smoke is begin to fill it even more. The panic is making the thoughts fly around in your head like a whirl pool, so you cannot process the situation.

Understanding the Situation

The situation above, coupled with the survivor’s testament, certainly happens and we all hope that it would never happen to us, whether we are on holiday or overseas on a business trip. However, it is worth noting that it doesn’t just happen overseas. This situation could happen right here in the UK and it may not just be a building on fire. There is always the chance that it could be a fire, as a secondary incident, created from a terrorist bomb!

Training To Be Safe

Training is the only way to allow our actions to be instinctive when faced with a situation of utter horror, as previously described. Such training needs to be provided by a trustworthy provider – one that will provide the safety training, which will focus your thought processes in a way that enables you to remain calm and work through whatever incidents you may face.

Through teacher-led lessons, reinforced with role play scenarios with live actors, the correct messages will be programmed deep into the recesses of your mind, ready to be used as another tool within your life experiences.

As an employer, try to imagine what you would do in this type of crisis, when you have a team from your organisation overseas, which is now faced with the burning inferno or the aftermath of a terrorist or environmental incident! Think right now – What is it you and your company would face? How do you deal with this? What happens if you get it wrong or your people have been seriously injured or worse still, killed!

Undoubtedly, an analytical paper trail will start and investigators will ask:

  • Which training, if any, did you provide to your work force?
  • How long ago did you provide that training?
  • Do you consider the training to still be in date or did you send them on a refresher?
  • Can you show me the training documents to demonstrate this?
  • What is your company risk assessment for sending your people overseas?
  • How do you mitigate their safety, when sending them into potentially hostile regions within developing countries?
  • What was your emergency evacuation and medical relief plan?

Thankfully, not every trip will require you to take the full training package to prepare you for every eventuality, or realistically, as many different situations as possible. In reality, this cannot be done, since every situation will be that much more different to the last and you will always react differently with every situation you face. However, with professional and experiential training, you can prepare yourself, your staff or family member to react and remain focused, if you are ever faced with an unforeseen, distressing situation.

Staff Defence – Hostile Environment Awareness Training (HEAT) Course

Staff Defence offers a substantial HEAT course, delivered by Staff Defence’s experienced Instructors and is certificated by ProQual, awarding body, which means you acquire nationally-recognised accreditation. The lessons on the dangers faced, not only when travelling overseas, but lessons that also help you with your everyday life in the UK.

Staff Defence Travel Safety training endeavours to meet the requirements of all our clients, including those from the business team attending a conference or visiting a factory in a remote location to the Non-Government Organisations (NGO’s) or media crew, deploying into a hostile situation, after a natural or man-made disaster. Our team has many years’ experience of being deployed to these challenging locations, together with “hands-on” training of a large audience of clients from the media, Government Organisations and NGO’s. These clients have all benefitted from our training and have remained safe, when they were deployed overseas into areas of fragility.

Insight into our Training Process

At Staff Defence, we start at the point of receiving your initial enquiry by assessing the location that you intend to travel to, so we can make sure that the correct and pertinent training is provided for you to protect your staff.

HEAT Course Structure

For the personnel who intend to travel to a hostile risk location, then the Staff Defence, fully-accredited “Hostile Environment Awareness Training” (HEAT) course, will meet the needs of anyone, who is travelling to a developing country in which challenging circumstances may be prevalent. The “HEAT” course provides the correct platform of knowledge to arm you or your employees for all travel. We understand the constraints of time and money posed upon organisations today, which is why our training can be conducted with pre-course learning in the form of an e-Learning system, followed by 3 days’ fully immersive session of knowledge and intense, live role-play scenarios.

The list below is a snap shot of key course components, but are not limited to the following:

  • Planning of your Trip – Getting it right from the start, your tickets, documentation, your arrivals, transport needs and cultural awareness.
  • Personal Security – Situational awareness is the backbone of all personal security, knowing, for example, that how you dress can single you out, as being a victim of crime. What to do in the face of an armed attack and location security. The following questions are raised –  Do you get down or do you run for cover?
  • Journey Management – Which car do you hire, or do you hire a car and a driver? Do you know how to prepare the vehicle daily? Most incidents that occur for overseas travellers are when they are driving on unknown roads in unfamiliar conditions.
  • Trauma First Aid – You may be staying in a country, where there are no emergency services, let alone an ambulance service. Therefore, would you know how to keep a friend or colleague functioning with a broken pelvis or a haemorrhaging bleed, as you wait for professional help? Worse still, are you the one that has to take your friend or colleague to any form of emergency care?
  • Kidnap Awareness – Kidnapping happens weekly within the UK and does so overseas. Importantly, to gain a perspective on this, it is not only the high-profile terrorist actions of taking hostages, but also, be aware that it is common for the criminal world to snatch business personnel or unsuspecting tourists for monetary gains. Once again, it is worth asking yourself – Do you or your colleagues understand how the kidnappers work? How would you survive a kidnapping? What can you do, in real terms, to avoid being a kidnap victim?
  • Conflict Management – A volatile country can have daily or weekly protest marches and often, within these crowds, there will be the mob element, ready to strike and turn the situation into utter chaos. The anger may be centred at you. For example, a simple misunderstanding in a shop or street with one person could turn into a situation of many against you. Learn how to de-escalate and evade these problems.

Staff Defence Ltd is able to provide all of this training and more, by promoting a new thought process for you and your employees, which will not only benefit the safety of all, but the work output will flourish, due to a new-found confidence. The whole training will be conducted within a totally enjoyable and, at times, a fun-filled learning experience, where everybody will learn decisively how to operate as a team, while feeling like a part of the thought processes required by the team to create a successful outcome to the different situations faced.

“We are confident that you and your colleagues will greatly benefit from our course, as many other already have done so.”

“For more information about any of Staff Defence courses, please contact us by telephone or email, as follows:-

T: 0203 997 7900