UK Still Facing High Risk
Counter Terrorism Policing (CTP) warns that the UK still faces an “unprecedented” level of threat from terrorism.
Being vigilant and speaking up if anything seems suspicious are once again a high priority in campaigns targeting businesses and the public.
There has been a significant shift in the groups carrying out or attempting to carry out attacks. Home Office statistics show that 33 people classified as far-right extremists were arrested in the year up to March 2019, vs. 29 the previous year.
This mirrors increased numbers of far-right arrests around the world, which were noted by the Global Terrorism Index in their latest report.
The Situation Overseas
With summer holidays on everyone’s agenda, safety issues abroad are being highlighted by many governments and security agencies.
France is known to be a potential target, but it remains an extremely popular travel destination. The FCO has just re-issued advice that was provided last week by the French government to French nationals: Be vigilant and be especially aware of the potential for terrorist attacks.
In addition (and staying in France) the potential for rioting following the Yellow-Vest movement is still present. If you are driving home through the Port of Calais, you may find your vehicle targeted by migrants attempting to sneak into the UK. Whilst rioting and vehicle hijacking are not terrorism-related, these are risks you need to be aware of when planning a trip.
Cautionary advice has also been stepped up for Spain in respect of civil unrest – this includes the beautiful city of Barcelona, a much loved tourist hotspot.
Festivals: Be Safe, Be Sound
In light of the continued risk, CTP has launched a new campaign for summer safety called “Be Safe, Be Sound.” The campaign focuses on UK music festivals which will be attended by hundreds of thousands of people over the next few months, but the safety protocol is just as useful for festivals in Europe of further afield.
Festival tickets are expensive, so remember that Safe Journey can provide cover if you’re planning on visiting a festival in the UK or overseas – a week of cover will cost £5.17 per person!
A recent CTP press release confirms: “While there is no intelligence to indicate an increased threat to festivals and live music events, the Senior National Coordinator for Protect and Prepare, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Lucy D’Orsi, wants the public to familiarise themselves with the #BeSafeBeSound safety advice so they can play their part in keeping people safe.”
D’Orsi emphasised that everyone can help make events safe and secure, “By familiarising themselves with the #BeSafeBeSound advice, by reading our Run, Hide, Tell guidance and to be ready to ACT if they spot suspicious behaviour and activity.
“Don’t think you might be wasting anyone’s time, it is always better to be safe than sorry. If something doesn’t look or feel right it probably isn’t, so tell someone.”
Advice From CTP
- Please arrive early for extra security measures. This will help prevent delays in getting into the event.
- Be patient with security checks and help the staff to help you. We know it is inconvenient but they are there to keep you safe.
- It is essential that you do not bring unnecessary items to the event; this will help to speed up searches and your entry to the event.
- If you spot someone acting suspiciously, report it to police or to security staff immediately: don’t leave it to someone else.
- In an emergency, if you think there is an immediate risk, always call 999 and look around you for help from staff – especially those with radios who can raise the alarm quickly.
- Don’t leave bags unattended or anywhere they could cause a security scare. And never agree to look after anyone else’s bags, no matter how plausible their story.
- If there is an incident, listen to staff and any announcements. Organisers will have emergency plans to help you keep safe.
- Remember, the chance of being caught in a terrorism incident is small. But if it happens – Run, Hide, Tell.
*You can financially protect yourself from the effects of terrorism for £5.17pp (for up to 8 days) or an Annual Policy will cost you just £15.66. Please read our Safe Journey Policy Wording for full details, Ts+Cs and exclusions.