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The priorities are to:

  • Assess the situation
  • Safeguard uninjured members of the group
  • Attend to the casualty
  • Inform the emergency services and everyone who needs to know of the incident

Contact ACE Assistance

24/7 helpline for medical emergency’s abroad

+44 207 173 7798

ACE Assistance must be informed as soon as reasonably possible of any emergency that may potentially give rise to a Claim.

Emergency Procedures

Even with careful planning, things can go wrong. It is vitally important to have clear emergency procedures in place for any unforeseen eventuality. READ MORE

Group leaders and teachers have a duty in law to act as any prudent parent would and should not hesitate to act in an emergency and to take lifesaving action.

County and controlled schools should follow LEA guidelines on emergency planning procedures

Who Takes Charge in an Emergency?

The group leader usually takes charge in an emergency. Emergency procedures should be in place and back-up cover arranged and there should be liaison with the tour operator if one is being used. READ MORE

There should be a pre-arranged school home contact

The school-contact’s main responsibility is to link the group with the school, the parents and LEA (if appropriate). They should have all the necessary information about the visit.

Emergency Procedures Framework during the Visit

Everyone involved in the trip, including teachers, supervisors, pupils and their parents should be informed of who will take charge in an emergency, named back-up and what they are expected to do in an emergency. READ MORE

In an emergency the main factors to consider include:

  1. establishing nature and extent of the emergency as quickly as possible
  2. ensuring that the group are safe and looked after
  3. establishing the names of any casualties and obtain immediate medical attention
  4. ensure all group members who need to know are informed and follow emergency procedures
  5. ensure a teacher accompanies any casualties to hospital and that the rest of the group remain adequately supervised and kept together
  6. notify the police if necessary
  7. inform the school contact (the number(s) should be accessible at all times during the visit)

The school contact should be provided with the details of the nature of the emergency, time date and location. They should also be given the names of the casualties with details of any injuries along with the names of any others involved. If there is further action to be taken this information (and by whom) should also be passed on to the school contact

ACE Assistance should be notified along with the provider/tour operator, also take a note of telephone numbers of all involved. Write down all relevant facts about the incident as soon as possible, taking witness details and preserve any vital evidence.

Keep a written record of all events, times and contacts after the incident and complete an accident report as soon as possible and contact the HSE/LEA inspector.

No one in the group should speak to the media, do not provide any names, and refer all media enquiries to the designated contact in the home area. Do not discuss liability with any other parties and if you’re overseas you may need to inform the British Embassy/Consulate.

Emergency Procedures Framework for School Base

Everyone involved in the trip, including teachers, supervisors, pupils and their parents should be informed of who will take charge in an emergency, named back-up and what they are expected to do in an emergency. READ MORE

The name, the school and home numbers of a school contact should be identified and have a second back-up contact. County and controlled schools will normally have a named LEA person as well.

The school contact needs to ensure the group leader is in control of the situation and establishing assistance if required, they also need to arrange for parents to be contacted, parents should be kept as well informed as possible during all stages of an emergency.

The incident should be reported using the correct forms if necessary, some incidents are reportable under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations.

If there is a serious incident, liaison with the designated school media contact should be made as soon as possible.

ACE Assistance

ACE Assistance will provide you and your party with advice and assistance should you become ill or sustain injury during your trip, both in the UK and abroad. READ MORE

This includes advice over the telephone, consultation with a local doctor, arranging for admission to the most appropriate hospital for your needs. If required, medical repatriation to the most appropriate hospital in the UK or to your home address.

They will also keep your family and school fully informed and organise any transport and accommodation that you may need, guaranteeing that your hospital bills will be met.

ACE Assistance is operated by a team of multi-lingual co-ordinators so language will not be a barrier regardless of the country you are in.

This service is automatically provided for all your Off-site activities.

Further support is given by ACE Assistance by providing pre-travel information, this includes information on:

  • Business and social customs.
  • Political situations.
  • Medical advice and medical facilities overseas.
  • Health precautions, including vaccinations.
  • Visa and entry permit requirements.
  • Currency.
  • Banking hours.
  • Time zones.
  • Climate.
  • Driving restrictions.

Media (PR) Contact and After a Serious Incident

LEAs usually have a designated person to contact with media enquiries for county and controlled schools. The media contact should liaise with the school contact, the group leader and, where possible and appropriate, the emergency services. READ MORE

In the event of an emergency all enquiries should be diverted to the media contact, after a serious incident the names of any casualties should not be given to the media.

Enough information should be provided to stop the media seeking information directly from the accident. As it is not usually possible to assess whether group members not injured or directly affected by an accident have been traumatised or whether other pupils have been affected.

It may be helpful to contact community support services and to seek professional advice on how to help individuals and the school as a whole to cope with the effects of a tragedy.


Helping to make school trips safer

What is ACE Off-site Activities Insurance?

ACE European Group Ltd (ACE) Offsite Activities Insurance provides an online resource for teachers, parents, governors and anyone involved in planning a school trip. It offers information, tools, tips and useful resources to help everyone deliver safer out of school education. Formerly known as this has now been refreshed and brought in line with the core brand that sits behind the service, ACE.


When a school takes its pupils anywhere outside the school boundaries (an off-site activity), there is always an element of risk. For example:

  • crossing a busy road with 30 primary school pupils on a trip to the local park;
  • taking GCSE English students to a play in the school minibus;
  • going to the local dry ski slope for some lessons before the annual skiing trip to the Alps.

Our online resource aims to help schools in the planning and preparation of off-site activities and minimise the risks they face. After all no one wants an accident to occur and planning in advance can help reduce them.

This scheme provides comprehensive insurance for all off-site activities, and, offering automatic worldwide cover for every child and teacher every time they leave the school gates with fixed annual costs with no hidden extras or adjustments such as excesses.

The scheme provides access to the 24 hour ACE Assistance helpline for medical emergencies abroad.

On-site cover is also available.

During a trip or off-site activity a teacher has a duty to act in loco parentis i.e. as if they were a reasonable and prudent parent. Parents and courts of law take a serious view of this duty of care and the extent of these responsibilities can be onerous.

Why choose ACE

ACE is one of the largest Accident and Health insurers in the United Kingdom, with the size, scale and financial security to meet your insurance needs. We are a truly global company with local operations in over 50 countries which brings advantages when you have international insurance cover.


"ACE paid over £20,000 for a medical expenses claim following a skiing accident in the USA"

What to do in an EMERGENCY?

The priorities are to:

  • assess the situation
  • safeguard uninjured members of the group
  • attend to the casualty
  • inform the emergency services and everyone who needs to know of the incident

Contact ACE Assistance

24/7 helpline for medical emergency’s abroad

View Emergency Procedures

A comprehensive overview of the key steps

Download Assistance Card

Take it with you wherever you’re going