Lessons from tragic Thomas Cook deaths

Posted by Daniel Scognamiglio, 18th June 2015
Head of our Travel team, Daniel Scognamiglio was recently interviewed by The Times in regard to the incredibly sad claim brought against Thomas Cook following the avoidable deaths of Bobby and Christi Shepherd.

All too often a tour operator will raise a defence to a claim made about a hotel or villa overseas applying the local standard of that holiday location rather than the UK standard.

Occasionally we can understand that it would not be right to impose a duty on the tour operator to make all hotels comply with UK Health and Safety regulations.

However a lot of holiday makers expect a good standard of holiday accommodation when they go abroad and that is why the book with a reputable tour operator.

Tourists often pay large amounts amount of money to travel around various parts of the world where health and safety standards are not as one would expect in the UK.

Were tour operators to impose upon their hotels a good, solid and independently assessed health and safety standard many deaths and injuries of British tourists would be avoided each and every year.

The conclusion of the article in The Times read:

“So where does this leave us? “The big lesson from the case, says Daniel Scognamiglio, at BL Claims Solicitors, “is the need for tour operators to implement good, solid health and safety assessments of all the facilities provided as part of the package. They should be properly audited and spot-checked by competent health and safety experts and I question whether they should be assessed against UK standards, where those are below the expectation of a UK customer.”

The article was originally published in The Times on 28th May 2015.

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