Tuesday, December 20, 2011

American Tourist, 70, Killed, When Car Hits Dog Sled in Sweden

Most of our readers are well aware of how I advocate preplanning when it comes to managing risks we all face when we travel abroad. This is a case that underlines why it is essential that we all have our personal affairs in order, no matter where we are traveling to.

On Monday (December 19), an American tourist, 70, died and four other people were injured when a car struck a dog sled in Sweden:
Two American tourists, two British tourists and a local guide were riding on the dog sled at a designated crossing near Jukkasjarvi, northern Sweden, when it was hit by a car and careened into a nearby ditch. The car, which swerved in an attempt to miss the sled, turned over as it also crashed into the ditch, landing on the sled.

COMMENT: The injured sled passengers and its driver were rushed to a local hospital, but a 70-year-old American man died of his injuries on the way. His companion, an American woman, was moved to Umea University Hospital, as her injuries were deemed to be serious, but not life-threatening. The two British tourists and the sled driver sustained minor injuries, while the car driver was treated for shock. The dogs involved were only mildly injured.

As intimated above, when we travel away from home, but particularly when we travel abroad, it is essential that our last will and testament, an advanced medical directive, a power of attorney and a letter of instruction be in place so our families can act on our behalf. Clearly, in the case described above, no one anticipated that they would be involved in a freak accident while enjoying a dog sled ride, but events such as this do occur.

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