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Minimise your employees' health and safety risks when they travel on business!

by , 13 February 2013
Protest action isn't always planned. And if you're travelling in a new country, it's easy to get caught up in the action and swept along with the crowd. But what if this happens to your employee who's travelling overseas on business? Do you know how to protect your employees' health and safety if they're injured while on business out of the country?

In Cape Town this week, a protester was injured when demonstrators prevented the principal from entering the grounds of a Crossroads rimary school on Monday, reports IOL.
And many parts of Pretoria's CBD were brought to a standstill on Monday as a result of Cosatu 'drive-slow' in opposition to e-tolling. This left a woman in tears after demonstrators blocked her route and surrounded her car, says IOL.
That woman could have been an employee of yours travelling for business.
So what do you do if an employee is traumatised or injured while travelling for business?
If you have employees that travel regularly for business, it's your responsibility to ensure their safety and well-being while travelling, because they're effectively still 'at work', says the Health and Safety Bulletin.
If an employee is injured while on business, you'll foot the bill for the hospital and medical expenses.
You can claim this back from COID if you report it to the Workmen's Compensation Commissioner as soon as possible.  
Prepare for your employees' health and safety if they're travelling abroad
But you'll need to take extra precautions if your employees travel overseas on business, because your employees will effectively be on duty 24 hours a day ..
And most hospitals and doctors abroad don't have the documentation required to submit a Workmen's Compensation claim and won't wait for payment.
That's why it's your responsibility to ensure your employee is fit for duty or travel before he leaves on the trip. You'll also need to ensure your employee has travel insurance in case he gets hurt while on business abroad. 
You can also minimise your employees' health and safety risks while travelling overseas by checking a global risk management website like Red24 for any travel risks like unexpected protest action or natural disasters that could affect your employee's health or safety.
Turn to page R01 of your Health and Safety Training Manual to read more about conducting a detailed risk assessment and how to qualify your risks. 

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