In the wake of recent multiple terrorist attacks in the UK, the government has published a rather extensive guide on terrorism and countermeasures. The guide is built as an easy-to-use manual for various sectors, situations, and threats (e.g. “night life” and “major events”). However, the 172-page PDF file is somewhat less than user-friendly.

Having said that, the manual does offer useful, if generic, advice, which can be applied either directly or indirectly as befits the user’s needs. As always generic advice is a supplement and can never be a stand-alone solution for a company or an organization.

The generic manual uses specific situations and locations as its basis (e.g. “night life”). It contains a long list with detailed advice and measures, which is then applied in a piece-meal manner to each situation or location as befitting. Thus, the specific advice and measures will be the same, if applicable, in different situations: Regardless of whether the location is “cinemas and theatres” or “stadia and arenas”, the advice and data offered on a specific issue, e.g. “attack methodology”, is the same.

In this sense, the 172-page manual us actually much shorter than it first appears and can be quite usable by organizations and groups. But it must be applied carefully and taking the specifics of your organization, group, or company into consideration.

Advice

Terrorism is a threat which draws more attention than warranted unless you or your colleagues travel to high risk areas or conflict zones. However, some organizations or companies do face a sustained threat (such as public transport, airlines, airports, owners of stadiums, restaurants, night clubs and so on) which is much larger than that faced by their on-off visitors or clients.

Use this manual as it applies to you. It may be a check-list which allows you to verify if you have minimum countermeasures in place or from which to draw inspiration. You can further use it as a baseline for offering travel advice to colleagues who are concerned, perhaps travelling to restless destinations. It offers useful advice but can also calm colleagues who may be alarmed – remember, that terrorism works by preying on the mind rather than by constituting a real risk.

Finally, you should make sure your company or organization has adequate travel insurance and health insurance in place which covers terrorist events. This include specific cover in case of terrorism, but also includes medical- and emergency evacuation, repatriation and, crucially, and absence of exemptions of cover as relating to terrorism, political violence or unrest (although “war” may still be exempt).

If you would like to know more please contact us at any time.

The UK Government publication can be found here