Traveller Safety and Security: Be prepared for the hippo threat!

Which presents the greatest danger, a shark or a hippo?

Alright, we’re not literally talking about hippos, but what they represent for travellers. For example, petty crimes such as muggings, existing health conditions and approximately the 1.25 millionº people who die each year on the world's roads.


Let’s assume that most of us wouldn’t want to meet either of these up close and personal, however, the majority would be more worried about the sharks, as they have huge appetites and those sharp teeth are pretty scary, right?!  The truth is that on average sharks have killed about eight people¹, while those innocent looking hippos have killed an estimated 500 people² a year in Africa alone.


So what’s the link between traveller safety and security? While everyone is preoccupied mitigating the dangers of the sharks, i.e. terrorist attacks or natural disasters, they’ve forgotten about the much more likely risks from hippos.


Top tips for travel managers: Be prepared for the hippo threat!

1. Prepare a pre-trip checklist that ensures even the most seasoned traveller has everything they need

2. Use authorised bookers who can override limits on corporate cards, or give the green light to alternative payment methods if needed

3. Provide important information and contact details in a physical wallet card as well as in digital format – it never hurts to have back-up

4. Keep an eye on the social channels of the FCO and media outlets to stay abreast of any major incidents – multiple sources can provide a clearer picture

5. Local contacts on the ground – CWT has seven 24-hour Service Centres in the EMEA region providing support to travellers and travel managers and three more offering extended hours.


Together, we can put duty of care into practice

Today, companies and organisations can be found guilty of corporate manslaughter as a result of serious management failures resulting in a gross breach of a duty of care³. By working together, travel managers have access to a range of CWT solutions that aim to safeguard the well-being of employees as well as maintain business continuity.


0. - World Health Organization.

1. - Average of eight fatalities per year worldwide in the 2011-2015 period. ISAF 2016 Worldwide Shark Attack Summary". Florida Museum of Natural History. Retrieved 24 April 2017.

2.- What are the world's deadliest animals?" BBC News. 2016-06-15. Retrieved 28-02-2017

3. - The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007.