When traveling, or in a new or changing environment it is important to maintain awareness of your surroundings, the people around you, using all your senses and judgment to assess the immediate space around you – this is called situational awareness. This deliberate means of keeping track of your surroundings allows you to notice any changes from the normal which may potentially impact on your safety and security. The term situational awareness and how to improve it, train it and utilize it are discussed throughout the security training courses we deliver. But what happens if an incident occurs that may catch you unawares, or was unavoidable – how to best react? Explore Secure® have designed an easy to remember thought process that will help guide you.
To that end – we have devised a deliberate set of steps to take to aid this process. Put simply – “think oh CRAP™” Should you find yourself in a situation which is uncomfortable or with the potential to deteriorate – or simply something doesn’t feel right remember CRAP™:
- CALM – keep calm, maintain composure and awareness of what is going on around you. Don’t Panic. Panicking is the worst and most unproductive thing to do. This is much easier said than done, but just the process of thinking to yourself CRAP and focusing on being calm will help you keep a clear head and make better decisions.
- RAPID ASSESSMENT – then make a rapid assessment of your situation. What is the threat, what could do you harm, what is available to assist you, or can you extract from the situation? Just a few seconds spent on coming up with a plan rather than running blindly or reacting wildly will significantly improve your chances of a favorable outcome.
- PRO-ACTIVE – having made the assessment make a pro-active decision, on your terms, of what to do. Thus allowing you to take the initiative and not have to react to what may be developing in front of you. An old saying goes – any decision is better than no decision. This is often true, especially if you have made a calm, and rapid services assessment of the threat/s – now you have to be pro-active, hopefully removing yourself from the threat/situation early to avoid the danger.
At Explore Secure™ we are dedicated to improving traveler safety and strongly advocate that all travelers – especially young or solo travelers, or people visiting higher risk environments consider how best to respond should a difficult situation emerge. This can be challenging – and making decisions when under pressure is never easy
Use CRAP™ – it’s easy to remember and can help guide you through the immediate decision-making process to remain safe in a difficult situation. Panicking never helps – and rushed decisions without assessing the situation can actually make things worse….so think CRAP™ and stay Safe.
Our online Travel Security Briefings cover this in more detail and look at several scenarios and examples of how best to adopt this proactive approach to travel safety – learn more. At Explore Secure® we are dedicated to broadening the discussion on travel safety for all travelers across the globe. We have developed our briefings and guidance based upon years of travel safety experience and engaging with leading security professionals, overseas embassies and consulates, and of course – the travelers themselves. We are firm believers that by taking sensible measures in both planning prior to travel and also the approach taken when traveling can exponentially increase your personal safety – and in turn contribute to a hugely rewarding travel experience. Explore the world and enjoy your travels – always consider your personal security and return home safely to share your experiences.