Oct 09 - Cosmos Holidays plc recently undertook some crisis management training from tranquilico.com for staff at their Bromley headquarters.
100% of the delegates rated the training course length, content, course overall and trainer as good or excellent.
Some of their comments were:
"Due to the very extensive experience of the trainer I found this course very interesting and informative"
"Thorougly enjoyed the desktop scenario, very interesting way of considering issues that arise in an incident"
"I found it very informative and full of useful ideas and suggestions - the participation at the end was good as it made you think about what would happen in a real scenario"
"Not complicated to understand, very informative and interesting"
"I liked the way we got to complete a group activity. It was interesting to see what every department does and putting something into practise makes it easier to understand"
"Perfect, confident, warm, sprinkling of anecdotes - never boring - excellent"
"I would recommend this to others"
If you want to take advantage of our cost effective crisis management training courses, then please get in touch. They range from half a day to a full day and can be tailored to fit your organisations exisiting procedures.
Oct 09 - Early in the morning of Sept. 29, an earthquake deep under the Pacific caused a massive tsunami to devastate the islands of Samoa and American Samoa, killing 111 people, devastating villages and flattening homes.
But as bad as the damage was, it could have been much worse. Laura Kong, head of the International Tsunami Information Center in Hawaii, said "Independent Samoa had run a tsunami drill with planned evacuation routes in Oct. 2007 and again last year; the preparation saved countless lives during this week's disaster".
The moral of this story is that it pays to be prepared for the unexpected, prior to the installation of the Tsunami warning centre and local evacuation drills, the first residents would know of a Tsunami would be the waves crashing onto the land.
In the same way, travel arrangers need to be prepared so that in the event of an unexpected incident their procedures can click into place and everyone knows what they are expected to do. They have trained and simulated scenarios so the real thing becomes easy.
For help with policies, procedures and training, get in touch
Oct 09 - If you are not sure where to start with your health & safety due diligence you can always consider self-assessments as the first rung on the ladder.
Many companies with lots of suppliers and small budgets use this as an option to mitigate their health & safety risk. tranquilico.com work with IMS (Interface Management Systems) and their well respected e-PASS system.
This allows completion of an audit on-line by a supplier and the system automatically risk assesses their response and gives you a safety status.
If you want to take advantage of using this system without having to purchase a license yourself, then please get in touch for a no obligation quote.
Oct 09 - Emma Price, travel liability solicitor at Leeds based mb law writes further on excursion safety in our October e-news. For the full article request a copy of our October e-news via the contact us section of this site. This is often a confusing area for travel arrangers and can lead to many accepting liability for excursions simply by the way they are sold.
Oct 09 - tranquilico.com recently conducted a crisis management seminar at WYSTC (World Youth & Student Travel Conference) on behalf of their WYSE Work Abroad Association. The Conference was held in Manchester this year and was very well attended with 780 delegates & 486 organisations from 50 countries represented
tranquilico.com have also authored the WYSE Work Abroad best practice crisis
management procedures which are available to all members.
Sep 09 - During September, tranquilico.com are supporting the Helen Rollason - Heal Cancer Charity. Helen was a respected BBBC TV sports presenter who sadly lost her battle with colon cancer in August 1999, aged 43.
The charity was founded in her name with the cooperation of her oncologist Professor Neville Davidson who continues to conduct clinical trials on new experimental cancer treatments at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, Essex.
The charity also funds support centres, a research laboratory and a network of charity shops throughout Essex.
If you wish to make a donation direct to the charity yourself, go to:
or visit their website:
Sep 09 - HolidayTravelwatch continue to post information on their website concerning complaints against hotels for predominantly food related issues. Their 'calls to arms' feature calls for holidaymakers to join together to form a class action against operators with several specialist law firms, generally on a no-win, no -fee basis. In August alone they have posted 'calls to arms' for many properties in popular holiday resorts:
Turkey - 6 Hotels, Egypt - 8 Hotels, Mexico - 2 Hotels, Tunisia - 1 Hotel, Dominican Republic 1 Hotel, Bulgaria 1 Hotel and Spain 1 Hotel. You can find the names on their website at :
If you operate to any of these hotels and were not aware, then you can ensure the supplier is advised of potential claims. It may also be prudent to carry out your own hygiene checks. Hygiene claims continue to rise so operators need to ensure that suppliers are operating good practice hygiene standards based on HACCP principles (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points). Check out:
Sep 09 - tranquilico.com are using google docs for the LATA (Latin America Travel Association) Land Transport safety campaign. This 12 month project will assess all the transport suppliers utilised by 42 LATA members in 20 countries in Southern & Central America.
LATA members can enter their suppliers details directly into google docs and this triggers the despatch of Good Practice guidance and then a self assessment audit. They can view the results in the same way and its both secure and free!
Sep 09 - Balcony safety is often an issue during high season. Incidents usually involve males 18-22 and alchohol. Sadly, young children can also be victims and these are often due to being left unsupervised on balconies that do not adhere to good practice balcony design.
Gaps greater than 10cm, step up allurements such as ledges or balcony furniture and ladder effect railings can all pose a danger to young children. In some countries the overall height can also be a problem. 1.1m is ideal, good practice is at least 1.0m but some countries still build hotels with balconies of 0.8m or lower.
In August we saw the tragic death of 18 month old Brad Kemer at the hotel Laguna in Chia, Sardinia. An Italian judge beleives the balcony did not meet building regulations with the presence of a step up and larger gaps through which he could have fallen.
If you operate youth or childrens holidays, then you should ensure that balconies meet good practice as a minimum and if not your guests are allocated low floors.
Sep 09 - Legionella is a disease that starts to raise its head as many resorts move into low season. The bacteria live in water systems and if allowed to grow and subsequently inhaled via aerosol droplets into the lungs, can cause pneumonia like symptoms. These can often be fatal, particularly in the very young or old and those who are immunosuppressed.
Unoccupied rooms leading to stagnation of water in the pipes and the lower heating effect of solar panels on water systems can cause the bacteria to grow as water doesn't reach the correct temperature to kill them.
There are simple steps suppliers can take to prevent the growth of legionella and these are detailed in our September newsletter.
EWGLI (European Working Group for Legionella Infection) monitor any reported cases throughout Europe and advise tour operators (via ABTA or FTO) of any cases linked to a specific hotel or cruise ship.
Aug 09 - The World Youth Student Travel Conference (WYSTC) is the keynote event of WYSETC (World Youth Student Exchange & Travel Confederation).
This year it takes place in Manchester at the Palace Hotel and Manchester Central.
The conference is attended by more than 890 delegates, many of them decison makers from the worlds leading and most respected organisations in youth, student and educational travel.
tranquilico.com MD Colin McGregor will be speaking at a crisis management seminar for the delegates on Wed 23rd September at Manchester Central.
For further information, check out their website:
Aug 09 - Swine flu cases are tailing off as we move into summer, although this may be down to the school holidays and launch of the National Pandemic flu service.
If you think you have flu you can call the national helpline: 0800 1 513 100
There is no sign that the virus is becoming more severe or developing resistance to antivirals. Those small number of deaths in the UK have mainly been in older children and adults with underlying risk factors.
Flu symptoms include: fever, headache, cough, weakness & fatigue, aching muscles and joints, sore throat, runny nose.
The NHS in conjunction with the HPA have produced a leaflet entitled 'Pandemic Flu - a guidance for business' which you can use to find out how to manage the impact of swine flu, find out what you can do to help your employees get treatment and help to prevent further spread of swine flu.
The document can be downloaded from:
You can also consult:
Aug 09 - tranquilico.com recently completed several crisis management training courses for Kaleidoscope Group Travel.
Based in Market harborough, they comprise the well known travel brands of Travelsphere, Page & Moy and Just You, taking more than 100,000 travellers on holiday each year.
Some of the delegates comments highlight the importance of being organised and the usefulness of annual training:
"The training course and simulation has given me more of an insight into the crisis response area and this is very important - as is the role we play"
"I feel it is important for the staff to feel empowered and for follow up courses to be held periodically, we need to feel confident to undertake anything thrown at us"
"Very thorough and covered points which had not been considered by staff before"
"Valuable experience that has helped bring together and prepare all areas of the business"
"The trainer was engaging and down to earth, offering a light hearted approach whilst still emphasising the importance of the exercise"
"High impact and informative, brilliant day"
Mike Percival, Manger of the Duty Office and Safety for the group said "I was extremely pleased with the training to date from tranquilico.com and I am looking to book further dates in the future"</a>
See their websites:
If you would like your organsiation to benefit from some cost effective crisis management training then please get in touch.
Aug 09 - Terrorism once again raises its ugly head with the recent bombings in Spain. The latest incident in Palma Nova, Mallorca where a car bomb killed 2 Guardia Civil policemen took place 50yds from a clinic, hotels, bars and restaurants frequented by tourists. Fortunately none were involved though some Northern Irish tourists were caught up in it. This incident took place at the weekend so would you have been able to deal with this if your customers were affected? Do you have your emergency plans in place and contacts up to date?
Aug 09 - On 14th July the EU Commission issued an updated Aviation blacklist. Two EU carriers had their Air Operating Certificates revoked, Euro Air from Greece and Nordic Airways from Sweden. They are also closely monitoring Egypt Air due to safety deficiencies being found in recent inspections.
For the full list see:
Aug 09 - As we head into August and what is generally the hottest part of the summer in many common holiday resorts, we start to see the frequent occurrence of forest fires. This is the time to remind your customers of the dangers of bush and forest fires in hot, dry, arid destinations. We have already seen them in Tarragona, Spain, La Palma and La Gomera in the canary islands and British Columbia, Canada. Customers need to be aware:
It would make sense to re-iterate to customers the dangers of fire in these arid destinations with some top tips:
1. Obey local laws regarding open fires, including campfires;
2. Keep all flammable objects away from fire;
3. Have firefighting tools nearby and handy;
4. Carefully dispose of hot charcoal;
5. Drown all fires;
6. Carefully extinguish smoking materials. (matches, cigarettes, lighters etc)
The La Palma fires started over the weekend, so do you have your emergency plans and emergency contacts organised, so that if your operation was affected, you could have put everything into motion for the safety of your customers?
Crises can occur at any time, any place, so it pays to be prepared
July 09 - tranquilico.com are now working with WYSE Travel Confederation (World Youth Student & Educational Travel Confederation) producing crisis management best practice plans for their WYSE Work Abroad Association.
This organisation based in Amsterdam has over 550 members in 118 countries who specialise in Youth & Student Educational travel.
Association Manager Stephanie Manning said "Crisis Prevention & Management is a key element of our members operations and WYSE Work Abroad intends to keep this as a priority by providing best practice guidance from which our member organisations can develop their own plans. tranquilico.com came recommended to us by one of our members and we are delighted to be working with them"
July 09 - From June to the end of October we have the Atlantic and Caribbean hurricane season. If you operate to areas potentially affected by hurricanes (or tropical cyclones as they are also known), then you should monitor them using the various national agencies available.
Atlantic & Caribbean hurricanes can be monitored via the National Hurricane Centre in Miami.
Pacific hurricanes can be monitored via the Central Pacific Hurricane Centre in Hawaii.
In addition, you can monitor Tsunami's via the same pacific centre, which is also the main pacific tsunami warning centre.
Indonesian and Indian Ocean Tsunami warning centres are also currently being put in place following on from the 2004 tsunami.
You should also ensure that your suppliers all have hurricane procedures in place and that you also have prepared notices and bulletins you can provide to your customers if required.
We can help you organise this.
July 09 - Media interest in holiday horror stories is really starting as we move towards the main summer holidays.
Details are just emerging of a fire in a Turkish hotel in the resort of Marmaris, where 7 brits have been treated for minor injuries and some others for smoke inhalation.
There is an investigation into the cause but no doubt there will also be an investigation into the hotels Fire safety and evacuation procedures.
Serious fires such as this requiring full evacuation and injuries are not as common in those countries where fire safety has taken prominence over recent years.
Turkey sadly still needs focus by operators as their fire safety standards do not always meet good practice standards or indeed the minimum requirements of the 1986 EU recommendations on fire safety.
If you need help checking hotels fire safety arrangements, then get in touch.
0208 242 4553
July 09 - Norovirus or 'winter vomiting disease' has raised its ugly head again recently.
350 passengers aboard Transocean cruises 'Marco Polo' have been struck down whilst on a round Britain cruise from Tilbury. There has also been one fatality. The ship is currently being held in Invergordon, Easter Ross, where public Health officials have boarded and many passengers have been taken off for medical treatment.
There are 769 passengers and 340 crew on board so over 30% have been affected to date.
The virus is difficult to control as it spreads by touch from person to person and can also remain virulent on all manner of surfaces e.g curtains, carpets, sinks, toilets. Typically sypmtoms are projectile vomiting and diahorrea lasting no more than 24/48hrs and the majority of people recover with no after effects. Sadly, the elderly or very young or those with any pre-existing medical conditions or compromised immune systems can be seriously affected, occasionally resulting in death.
Prevention of spread of infection procedures need to be implemented as quickly as possible in these types of situations, with affected passengers confined to their rooms or cabins and an effective sanitising programme put into place.
Unaffected passengers were allowed ashore in Invergordon and this caused anger from the local community.
Do you have 'Prevention of Spread of infection' procedures already established, that you can transmit to your suppliers and customers in the event of an incident affecting you?
We can help you with this if you need it.
July 09 - Air France did one excellent action with the relatively quick introduction of their dark website following the crash of flight AF447.
Visitors to Airfrance.com were confronted with a blank white screen featuting a simple air france logo and 3 boxes:
1. For those seeking information on flight AF447
2. For those seeking flight bookings on any of their international sites.
3. For those seeking any other corporate information.
Clearly this diverted any visitors seeking information on the incident away from clogging the normal reservations sites. It also allowed them to post press releases and information for the public relating to the incident on a seperate web site.
It pays organisations to have these 'Dark Sites' prepared in advance as in this case it proved extremely useful, protecting normal business and also projecting a professional image to those visiting your sites. It is not a always a good image having jolly travel pictures for those visiting your site with grief/concern at their front of mind.
July 09 - Airbus suffered another PR disaster recently with the loss of a Yemenia Airways Airbus A310 off the Comores islands in the Indian Ocean.
Whilst this airline did not sit on the EU blacklist, it does appear that the actual aircraft in question had been investigated by the French safety commission and banned from any further landings in France. There were questions over the airlines maintenance and reporting procedures and they were due to be checked by the European Airline safety committee.
Relatives who gathered at Paris Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport and Marseille Marignane airport to wait for news, some expressing anger at the state of the airline's planes. "They put us aboard wrecks, they put us aboard coffins. That's where they put us. It's slaughter. It's slaughter," one relative in Paris told French TV.
The airlines website also crashed under the pressure of traffic immmediately after the accident. When it was re-instated they simply had a small banner announcing sympathy for those involved above the usual reservation screen and its holiday pictures, this was in stark contrast to Air France's web initiative.
152 passengers perished, with only one child surviving.
July 09 - IMS Interface Management systems are the leading provider of health & safety database systems to the travel & leisure industry. Their innovative PASS 3 system is used by most of the larger tour operators due to its ability to create and send electronic self audits to suppliers via an e-mailed web link. The completed audit is then automatically risk assessed by the computers health & safety software, providing the tour operator with the information they require on the safety status of the supplier, they can then make decisions on use.
IMS now host PASS 3 for tranquilico.com, and IMS Business Development Manager Ben Kidds says "By hosting PASS 3 for tranquilico.com, this allows those smaller operators, who don't have the resources or budget to purchase their own system, to be able to utilise PASS 3 technology, outsourcing to a specialist organisation who can do the work for them. We are delighted to be working again with Colin as we have worked with him for many years, initially when he was with Canvas Holidays when ABTOF (Association of British Tour Operators to France) members bought the original PASS system for assessing campsites overseas. Colin went on to continue to use PASS during his time in charge of health & safety at Thomson, MyTravel and Thomas Cook. Confirming its status as the preferred system for UK tour operators".
If you wish to license your own system, then contact IMS at
If you want to take advantage of tranquilico.com operating the system for you then e-mail:
July 09 - British holidaymakers are being urged to seek health advice before travelling to malaria-prone countries after a survey suggested that millions of Britons are ignoring the risks.
According to the study, as many as one in five Britons did not take precautions against malaria while travelling to a malaria zone, while a further 11 per cent did not realise that they had travelled to an area affected by the disease. During the past 15 years, the incidence of the deadliest form of malaria - plasmodium falciparum - has increased by almost a third among Britons.
There has been a 190 per cent increase in the number of Britons travelling to malaria hotspots in the past 10 years and each year around 2,000 Britons return home with the disease. Malaria is estimated to be responsible for between 1.5 to 2.7 million deaths worldwide each year.
If a customer can prove that they were not advised of the need for anti malarials prior to booking and travelling and subsequently are infected with malaria, they could well take legal action against their travel arranger.
In light of this it may pay all travel arrangers to review the travel health information they provide, especially if they operate to malarial destinations. Customers can also be directed to www.nathnac.org
where they can obtain destination specific health advice.
The Foreign Office also provides health advice on their Travel Advice pages: www.fco.gov.uk
Lloydspharmacy who carried out the survey has launched an online service that can prescribe and dispense antimalarial medication to travellers without the need to visit a GP. See their online doctor service at:
July 09 - Corgi gas have been replaced by Capita as Great Britains gas safety body. Operating as the Gas Safe Register, they also have responsibilty for promoting gas safety at home and abroad.
They reccommend that holidaymakers take a battery operated smoke detector with them. Whilst sensible, this is not always practical.
Operators can minimise any risk by having a gas safety policy. If you need help with this get in touch.
July 09 - News that the 2 Thomas Cook employees Nicola Gibson and Richard Carson are to be prosecuted for the deaths of Bobby and Christi Shepherd in Corfu, has once again focused attention on Health & Safety.
We agree that they should not be involved as the fault clearly lies with the hotel and its maintenance regime. This is potentially a Greek effort to divert flak away from their gas safety standards.
This should not deter companies from continuing their due diligence strategies as legal experts still agree these are sensible measures to take.
Co-gas safety have been lobbying for improved gas safety at both home and abroad.
June 09 - Win an i-pod shuffle - cool! Simply e-mail email@example.com the e-mail addresses of 3 people you think would appreciate receiving our monthly informative e-news updates and answer the following question: "Which company produces the i-pod and i-phone?" Entries must be received by 10th June 2009, Employees, family and friends of tranquilico.com are not eligible to apply. The Editors decision is final on the winning entry.
To enter: provide 3 e-mail addresses and answer the question. Send via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org close of business on 10th June 2009
June 09 - Cosmos Holidays (Globus Gateway Group) are the latest to sign up for some crisis management training from tranquilico.com. Christine Francis, Head of Customer Services said "Training and a simulation from tranquilico.com are the perfect way to refresh and train our staff on our existing crisis management procedures" Neighan Walker, Group Operations Controller added "I don't think you can train enough for these kind of events, thankfully tranquilico.com offer the perfect solution for hard pressed operations departments as they do all the hard work for you, preparing and delivering training geared to your companies own procedures"
June 09 - Operators interested in Sustainability may wish to consider registering with the 'Travelife' scheme. This provides operators and their suppliers with tools to assist them, it also provides an on-line self-audit system in which they can measure their performance against good practice guidelines. Suppliers can also request a physical audit in order to be considered for a prestigious Gold, Silver or Bronze Travelife award. These are currently being featured in the brochures of a number of leading European Tour Operators. tranquilico.com can carry out Travelife auditing on your behalf.
visit the website: www.travelifesystem.com
June 09 - A british man died and nine other tourists were injured in a balloon crash in Cappadocia, Turkey. Two balloons collided shortly after tale-off causing one to fall 50m to the ground. Peter Woodman of the Press Association wrote: Large numbers of balloon companies compete in this area for tourist business but would-be balloonists are warned to carefully consider which companies to give their business to. Some are poorly equipped and inexperienced and the winds whilst calm first thing can quickly become unstable and potentially dangerous". Coming hot on the heels of the spate of balloon incidents in Egypt now may be the time to get any of your suppliers checked if you have not already done so...we can help.
The 'Fairy Chimney' region of Cappadocia has spectacular Limestone scenery.
June 09 - Travel law specialist mb-Law have warned that food illness claims are on the increase. Emma Price, travel liability solicitor warns " It is essential that operators check their suppliers have reliable systems in place, without any evidence operators and their insurers can be in difficulties defending these types of claims. The situation can be significantly improved by undertaking health & safety checks of suppliers to ensure they operate and maintain appropriate HACCP systems"
mb-law can assist with any travel related litigation, tranquilico.com can carry out hygiene checks on your behalf.
June 09 - Cancer Research UK recently announced that cases of malignent melanomas in the UK had reached 10,000 per annum and were expected to hit 15,000 by 2014. This is the deadliest form of skin cancer and they believe we brits are unaware of the dangers of sunbathing, particularly when holidaying overseas. You might want to consider re-iterating any 'safety in the sun' message to your customers by signing up to the Cancer Research UK 'Sunsmart Campaign'
Visit their website: www.sunsmart.org.uk
May 09 - FCO lift non-essential travel ban on Mexico as number of swine flu victims decreases. Mexico operators can now re-assure customers and re-commence their programmes.
May 09 - Leading Escorted Tours specialist Travelsphere, part of the Kaleidoscope Group have signed up for some of tranquilico.com's crisis management services. Head of Operations Laurie Higman said " I worked with Colin at Thomson Holidays and know he can bring an enormous amount of knowledge and expertise to assist us with our crisis management planning. He has also helped us with drawing up some of our job descriptions for our health & safety recruitment"
Visit their website: www.travelsphere.co.uk
Apr 09 - The FCO have placed a non-essential travel ban on Mexico following the Swine Flu outbreak that has claimed over 150 lives already. Cases have been reported around the world including 2 in Great Britain. The travel ban is an attempt to prevent any pandemic, operators to Mexico need to take appropriate action until such time as the FCO advice changes.
Apr 09 - 13 tourists and 3 Egyptian staff injured in a ballon crash over Luxor. It was reported the ballon hit a mobile phone mast and the gondola detached from the balloon and fell to the ground. One French tourist has a reported broken back and several were transferred to hospital in Cairo. There are rumours there were 24 tourists in the gondola and it was possibly overloaded. It has been the 3rd incident involving balloons in Luxor this year and it is beleived there are too many operators in a relatively small area. If you sell ballooning in Luxor it may be prudent to suspend sales pending a formal investigation as to the reasons why there are ongoing incidents in this area.
Apr 09 - The recent aircraft incident in Venezuela once again highlights the need to check out your higher risk excursions and activities. Take the opportunity to review your H&S procedures and consider your policy on high risk excursions.
Apr 09 - tranquilico.com offers £100 off its half day crisis management course.
Apr 09 - Political riots in Bangkok, the foreign office advise against all but essential travel to Bangkok. If you feature this as a holiday destination you should evacuate anyone there and divert anyone due to travel until the advice changes.
Mar 09 - Earthquake in L'Aquila in Italy, over 200 reported dead and some 17,000 homeless. This has been Italy's largest earthquake at 6.3 magnitude on the richter scale and only 60 miles from Rome. Are you prepared if your customers were involved in something like this?
Mar 09 - tranquilico.com offers £100 off its half day contractors health & safety training course.
Feb 09 - tranquilico.com are working with LATA (Latin American Travel Association) on a Land Transport Safety scheme throughout 2009. This forms an important rung in LATA members health & safety due diligence.
Visit their website: www.lata.org
Jan 09 - tranquilico.com issues a monthly e-news update. If you wish to register then please submit your e-mail address via our contact form on this site and we will add you onto our email mailing list.
Jan 09 - Latin American adventure specialist Pura-Aventura sign up for tranquilico.coms crisis management services. Offerring active holidays in comfort, Pura have an exciting range of holidays to both Central and Southern America, plus a programme to Southern Spain. See their website at:
Jan 09 - Following the US airways incident in New York, now is the time for organisations to assess how prepared they are if they had to deal with a similar incident involving your clients. tranquilico.com can you help you prepare policies, plans and train you for just such an event.
Dec 08 - tranquilico.com have recently become partners of the Foreign Office 'Know before you Go Campaign'. If you send customers overseas and haven't yet enrolled then join up now. The campaign is aimed at promoting to customers the need to take out adequate travel insurance. It also urges them to research their destination on the FCO website along with some excellent pre-travel tips.
* Did you know 32% of customers research the weather before they go but only 10% check out any health & safety information.
for ultimate 'peace of mind'
Contact us: 01245 463500 or
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Complete our contact form in the contact us section of the site:
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