Sunday, December 2, 2012

Egypt: Five German Tourists, Two Egyptians Killed in Two-Vehicle Collision Near Red Sea Resort

Although details are very sketchy, five German tourists and two Egyptians were killed in a collision between two mini-buses early on Sunday (December 2) at a Red Sea resort in Hurghada.

A number of tourists in both vehicles were also injured, without providing details.

COMMENT: Tragically, many of us return home in the cargo compartment of an airliner rather than a seat, although such a thought is the farthest from our thoughts as we prepare to embark on an exciting trip abroad.

I make this statement in sobering terms not to offend our loyal readers, but to bring home the fact that traveling in the developing world is not without high personal threats.

Few tourists and travelers expect to be killed abroad, yet increasingly, as safety protocols in developing countries, including vehicle maintenance, traffic enforcement and the recruitment of low-paid and inexperienced drivers, become the norm rather than the exception.

It should also be noted that on Friday (November 30), two Russian tourists were killed when their tourist bus overturned near the Sinai resort of Nuwweiba. 

Additionally, On November 17, 47 Egyptian school children were killed when a train ran into their bus on train tracks in central Egypt.  

It is essential that tourists and business travelers alike focus on the details of transport providers and determine in their own minds whether such vendors are putting them at risk.

Alternatively, even though it often has cost implications, we should always reserve the right to make our own transport arrangements if we perceive that transportation providers are putting us at irreversible risk.

As a parting thought, I offer the bus accident over the weekend at Miami International Airport as an illustration of what can happen because of an incompetent driver who was unaware of the height restrictions of the bus he was driving, vis-á-vis airport overpasses.

Many of us leave a last will and testament, an advanced medical directive and a letter of instruction to the final years of our lives, yet we never know when our last day on Earth will be. 

Thus, these details should be finalized in the here and now, as we never know when that final day will be. 

This report will be updated with additional details as information becomes available.