Holidaymakers told to be on alert for terror attacks abroad
Police and ministers called on people to familiarise themselves with the steps to follow in the event of a security alert while they are away.
Counter-terror chiefs have issued a fresh appeal for British holidaymakers to be on alert for attacks overseas as millions prepare for summer breaks.
Police and ministers called on people to familiarise themselves with the steps to follow in the event of a security alert while they are away by watching a four-minute safety video.
The film, first launched last year, adapts the “Run, Hide, Tell” message for a holiday setting, depicting a firearms attack unfolding at a hotel.
It was created in the wake of the Sousse attack in Tunisia in 2015, in which 30 Britons were among 38 victims killed when a gunman opened fire at a beach resort.
Since the atrocity, the UK has expanded the international footprint of its counter-terror policing network.
There are currently 46 counter-terrorism police liaison officers based overseas, compared with 23 two years ago.
As UK schools break up for summer holidays and the travel industry prepares for one of the busiest periods of the year, police are repeating their call for the public to help support the international security operation by watching the safety film before they travel.
Launching this year’s campaign, Chief Superintendent Nick Aldworth said: “The chances of being caught up in a terrorist incident are still low but sadly we have seen atrocities take place in the UK and abroad, especially last year.
“So it is important everyone stays alert and knows what to do if the worst was to happen.
“We want people to think of this in the same way they do the safety film airlines show before take-off.
“They don’t expect anything bad to happen but it is a sensible safety precaution to show people what to do.”
Police emphasised there is no specific information that British holidaymakers will be targeted this summer.
The Run, Hide, Tell guidance says people should run to a place of safety if there is a safe route, leaving belongings behind and insisting others go with them, without allowing someone else’s indecision to slow their escape.
Running is a better option than trying to surrender or negotiate. If there is nowhere to go, the next best step is to hide, barricading in if possible. Phones should be switched to silent with vibrate turned off.
While the chances of getting caught up in a terrorist event are extremely low, it is important that people remain vigilant Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Authorities should be alerted only when it is safe by calling the local emergency number, which holidaymakers should find out in advance. For EU countries it is 112.
Security Minister Ben Wallace said: “Fortunately the majority of us will never experience a terrorist attack whilst enjoying a holiday abroad and there is no need to be alarmed.
“However, it is important that we all remain vigilant to the threat.”
Counter-terrorism minister Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon urged people to check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s travel advice on the country they are going to.
He said: “While the chances of getting caught up in a terrorist event are extremely low, it is important that people remain vigilant.”
Nikki White, director of destinations and sustainability at travel association ABTA, said: “We recognise the importance of raising awareness and providing clear guidance for our members and their employees.
“We know that customers would look to those staff working in their hotels and resorts to take the lead and respond quickly to an emerging situation.”
-The Run, Hide, Tell international safety video can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzcldaLbYPA