New ISO handbook for adventure tourism safety

Few minutes to read
By Maria Lazarte & Vivienne Rojas
Tagged as Services
Published on
Developing, implementing and maintaining a safety management system (SMS) requires a big effort. To assist adventure tourism providers in this task, a new handbook has been published. It gives simple step-by-step guidance and is completely aligned with the requirements of ISO 21101 for adventure tourism safety management.

Whether it be trekking, scuba diving, rafting, canyoning, bungy jumping or any other exciting outdoor activity, keeping participants safe is a priority. But as an adventure tourism operator, how can you ensure that no box is left unticked and that your business does not neglect or miss out any important steps? ISO 21101 has been designed to provide a systematic approach to safety. The SMS outlined in the standard can be used by small and large companies alike, operating anywhere in the world.

ISO 21101 helps:

  • Enhance safety performance
  • Meet expectations for participant and staff safety
  • Demonstrate safe practice
  • Support compliance with applicable legal requirements

ISO 21101 vs no standard

Garth Gulley, co-author of the handbook, is eloquent about the importance of having a safety management system in place: “The benefits of having an SMS that conforms to ISO 21101 include demonstrating a strong reputation as a safe provider and improving overall service delivery. Not only will an effective SMS help keep your participants safe, it can result in more positive feedback, more bookings, revenue growth, better staff engagement, and improved relations with business partners, suppliers, regulators and other interested parties.”

Easy-to-use handbook

Because a great majority of adventure tourism providers are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the new handbook, ISO 21101, Adventure tourism – Safety management systems – A practical guide for SMEs, offers simple step-by-step guidance to help all types of operators develop, implement and continually improve their SMS.

“All adventure tourism providers, no matter where they operate in the world, are responsible for people’s safety. Adventure tourism activities involve risks and providers have to manage those risks. The consequences of not doing so can be catastrophic,” says Garth. “But thanks to this new easy-to-use handbook, adventure tourism operators now have clear, practical advice on how to maximize the chances of keeping participants safe… every time. What makes this handbook especially useful is that it is written for the small-to-medium business owner or manager, the person working at an operational level but with big strategic risks to manage. Because we wrote this handbook with SMEs in mind, we are confident it can really make an impact in the global adventure tourism sector.”

The handbook is available for purchase from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store.

Maria Lazarte
Maria Lazarte

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