Travel risk round-up: 26 July

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Moderate
Venezuela: Reports of Mass Power Outages Nationwide

According to incoming social media feeds on Monday, 22 July, severe power outages have been occurring for several hours across the country. The states of Táchira, Bolivar Aragua, Vargas as well as Caracas and the surrounding areas have all been severely affected. Last reports state that power has started coming back in some affected areas. It is not yet clear what has caused the nationwide power outage but such incidents have become more frequent due to the decaying electrical infrastructure. Local authorities have reportedly stated that the blackout was caused by a deliberate attack by foreign governments.

Advice for businesses and travellers

Members in Venezuela are advised to monitor local media sources for further information and updates on the power outage in their particular area of operations and review contingency and business continuity plans in light of the uncertain power supply situation. Travellers should be mindful of an increased risk of opportunistic crime in urban areas amid the outages.


High
Yemen: Central Bank Transport Vehicle Robbed by Gunmen in Hota

According to local media sources, armed men robbed a Yemeni central bank transport vehicle of 20 million riyals (£64,000) in Hota on Tuesday, 24 July, as it was to deliver salaries to the Telecommunications Ministry branch. The gunmen forced the driver and the vehicle’s security escorts to open the vault. Security authorities have launched an investigation.

Advice for businesses and travellers

Due to the ongoing conflict, Yemen remains an extreme risk environment and as such members should reconsider all non-essential travel to the country at this time. Operationally-critical travel should only be conducted with maximum security provisions in place and all movements outside secure compounds should only be conducted following a thorough localised risk assessment.


Moderate
Japan: Multiple Killed and Missing in Typhoon Danas-Related Landslides; Thousands Evacuated in Kumamoto Prefecture

Regional media sources from southern Japan report that multiple people have been killed and others missing and presumed dead on Monday, 22 July, following landslides from the recent impact from Typhoon Danas. Thousands have also been evacuated in parts of Kumamoto and Kikuchi City in the Kumamoto Prefecture. The landslides in the area are due to the rapid rise of local rivers. Emergency teams from the prefecture are in the area conducting search and rescue operations.

Advice for businesses and travellers

Members in affected areas are advised to monitor local media sources for the latest weather-related updates and to remain apprised of disruption and warnings in their particular area of operations. Monitor the Japan Meteorological Agency website for the latest weather warnings and advisories in your particular area of operations. Travellers should heed any directives issued by local authorities, including evacuation orders.


Low
United Kingdom: Ongoing Police Operations near Buckingham Palace After Pedestrian Struck by a Vehicle; Traffic Disruption Expected

According to incoming social media feeds on Thursday, 25 July, Constitution Hill, adjacent to Buckingham Palace, is currently closed after a woman was struck by a vehicle during rush hour. Police are currently on the scene and the woman was evacuated via air ambulance. It is not known when the police cordon will be lifted. Further information is awaited.

Advice for businesses and travellers

Members near the affected area should avoid the vicinity of the incident due to ongoing police operations and should anticipate traffic disruption in the immediate term. Travellers should monitor local media sources for any further information.


Low
Nicaragua: Masaya Volcano National Park Closed due to Continued Volcanic Activity

According to local media reports on Thursday, 25 July, Masaya Volcano National Park was closed by authorities due to continued volcanic activity. Eruptions at Masaya volcano on Tuesday, 23 July, resulted in ash falls in the nearby communications of San Ignacio and El Arenal, however, this did not produce a threat to public health. Authorities are continuing to monitor volcanic activity for further escalation despite a period of relative calm since the aforementioned eruptions. The decision to closed the park was taken following an eruption on Sunday, 21 July, and although this was initially implemented over a 48-hour period, it is unclear if the park has reopened.

Advice for businesses and travellers

Members in the area are advised to closely monitor local media for developments and for potential emergency instructions issued by authorities. Members are further advised to ensure that they are familiar with local emergency protocols, including evacuation procedures, should volcanic activity escalate.