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The attack in Nice, France, where a truck driver plowed through a crowd celebrating Bastille Day in a mile-long rampage Thursday night, killing at least 84, highlights the perils of sending employees abroad.
Since last November, terrorist attacks in Paris, Brussels and now Nice have killed more than 200 people and injured hundreds.
The attacks have raised red flags for risk managers and employers with personnel traveling to areas where such attacks could occur. Obviously, business travel can't halt, but heightened awareness of the risks and how to deal with them is a must.
Experts at Kroll Inc. and International SOS offer the following tips for international business travelers:
• Consult with their company's travel and/or security representatives regarding compliance with corporate travel requirements such as insurance policies and legal releases before traveling.
• Check for travel advisories for countries they will be visiting. Travel Warnings and Consular Information Sheets are available on the State Department website.
• Register with the U.S. State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, or STEP. This allows them to receive information from the local U.S. embassy about safety conditions in the destination country and helps the embassy contact travelers in an emergency, whether a natural disaster, civil unrest or family problem.
• Be aware of immediate surroundings and avoid large crowds or crowded places. Also avoid street demonstrations and exercise vigilance when in public places or using various types of transportation.
• Have a communication plan that includes a phone that can make international calls and send text messages.
Risk managers are urged to revisit and rehearse their companies' travel risk management plans in the wake of the devastating Paris attacks that left 130 people dead and hundreds injured.