At Summits Africa we take your safety extremely seriously. There are 3 essential components to the Summits Africa approach to keeping you safe on any one of our trips:
2.The right tools for the job (oximeters, PAC, oxygen, stretchers, team work, customised constant monitoring system)
3.Communications & backup (sat phones, telephones, radios, evacuation teams, 24 hour backup, liaising with base team)
Learn more below:
Our guides and crews are specifically trained and instructed to ensure, where ever possible, that our guests can walk off the mountain, unaided, themselves. They are also trained extensively on monitoring systems (see below for more) and also management of AMS (acute mountain sickness), and more advanced forms of mountain sickness such as HAPE (High Altitude Pulmonary Edema) and HACE (High Altitude Cerebral Edema).
Summits Africa runs bi annual training.
Our training program is designed around our ethos. Everyone from a porter to a head guide has specific modules to undertake to help with their on going development. Modules vary from professionally taught and certified CPR with resuscitation dummies to environment specific flora training. Read more about our training programs.
The Right Tools
Over the last decade the Summits Africa team has systemised our approach to monitoring guest’s safety. We call this the “Constant Monitoring System”.
1.Pre trip: Even before you travel with Summits Africa you are expected to furnish us with important information about your health and even what training you are undertaking and what kit you are bringing.
2.Pre Start: during your briefing your details and kit are double checked. Guides and crews are fully briefed on all guests.
3.Event: guides monitor you daily with pulse oximeters and altitude sickness scorecards. If evacuations are required then supplementary oxygen (for high altitude trips) and custom built stretchers are on hand.
4.Post trip: your feedback is essential and combined with proper guide and crew debriefings and your input we expect our trips to continue to develop and improve
All altitude Summits Africa trips have:
• Supplementary oxygen
• Pulse oximeters
• Comprehensive first aid kits
• Customised evacuation stretchers (designed to allow upright evacuation for pulmonary edema cases as well as back boards for spinal support)
• Altitude sickness assessment scorecards as a supplementary assessment tool
Portable Altitude Chambers are also available and always used on Kilimanjaro trips that stay in Kibo crater. They are available for added safety on request for standard trips as well.
Communications & Backup
Depending on the trip different communications devices may be applicable. These days most areas in East Africa are covered by cell phone coverage but any trip that heads into areas that have black spots (even if they last for only one day), go with satellite phones. For adventure trips, hiking and mountain biking for instance, radio communications between teams are also included.
All trips have 1 specific manager at base assigned to them for reliable communications channels and all teams check-in twice daily.
All trips Summits Africa operate require that our clients take out flying doctors or emergency evacuation cover. Almost all trips, by default, have this cover built into the cost for no nonsense evacuation support in remote zones.