Disaster Assistance

Disaster Assistance


An Airbus Neo aircraft, route LIS – FRA (Portuguese low-cost airline) crashed shortly after taking off in hills near Cascais, a well-known tourist area. The month is June. There are 130 passengers on board, plus two infants and 5 crew (135+2)

Variety of business and leisure travellers. The flight includes a school party of 13-year olds on a language exchange


No survivors

Passenger nationalities:

  • 57 Portuguese (including 12 from school trip)
  • 10 British
  • 69 German
  • 5 crew all Portuguese and based in Lisbon


  • Relatively new client and new airline to the industry. Retained GoCrisis in last two years
  • The client has a full service, paid retainer with GoCrisis, which allows the teams to have trained together regularly and worked together to have everything in place (call centre toll free numbers, first statements, clarity of roles and responsibilities) to activate services and teams swiftly.
  • The emergency call has been received by GoCrisis 24-hour emergency number, full services have been requested and contractual requirements are in place.
  • Portuguese and German team members activated. German teams travelling to Frankfurt to set up the FAC at the airport hotel. Portuguese team on route to Lisbon to await further instructions
  • Teams and services will be activated at the same time, or against the timeline dictated by the event. In any case, it will be as soon as reasonably possible and without any unnecessary delay.
  • Report of incident to relevant national authorities, including Airbus

GoCrisis Team Activation – initial response

  • GoCrisis Incident Director (from UK) and Crisis Communications Director (from UK or Switzerland) to Lisbon , to meet the senior team, as established CMC will be at the airport in airline HQ building (landside)
  • GoCrisis SVP Global Operations (LHR) to go where the remains will be located for Identification, if needed.
  • GoTeam to depart on next possible flight from various locations in UK and other countries within the EU, as appropriate for language and skills required
  • The GoTeam consist of Incident Director, Family Assistance Director, Regional Senior Associates and first responders, Crisis Communications Director, SVP Global Operations and Psychological Support.
  • Languages spoken within GoTeam: Portuguese, Brazilian Portuguese, Spanish, German, English.
  • GoTeam deploy with GoBags and GoCrisis KIT.

Activate Call Centre

  • Open Call Centre with toll free numbers for Portugal, Germany and UK
  • 30 agents within minutes (quickly scale up to 50-200 or more as required – this can be done rapidly)
  • 5 experienced outbound agents for sensitive notification calls. Fully trained and skilled in this area.
  • GoCrisis receives preliminary (unconfirmed) lists of impacted persons to Call Centre within 30 minutes of activation.
  • GoCrisis receives confirmed lists of impacted persons to Call Centre within 90 minutes
  • GoCrisis proceeds to make outbound calls to affected families and Next of Kin.
  • Release Call Centre contact information on all communication platforms and to all involved agencies
  • Call between CMT and Call Centre hourly to update key data and statistics
  • GoCrisis Agent languages: Portuguese, German, Spanish, French, English.

Crisis Communications

  • Crisis Communications Director to client HQ, one Crisis Communications senior associate on call while Director is in transit.
  • Crisis Communications plans, procedures and templates assumed ready pre-incident.

GoCrisis provide support to client in the following tasks

  • Activate procedures in Crisis Communication Manual
  • Change website to emergency mode
  • Release holding statement in 30 minutes of incident notification
  • Release first press release within 1 hour
  • All external media (press, spokespersons, social, web) to be 100% consistent
  • Non pre-approved releases to be checked with Legal
  • Engage with other involved parties (airports, governments, code-shares, partners, Embassies) to attempt consistency and timing of messages
  • Engage with existing PR agencies and emergency communications partners to inform release protocols
  • Engage with other agencies (police etc) to share information and coordinate communications
  • Brief senior management on company position and key messages if approached by the media
  • Regular internal comms releases
  • Prepare comms for directly affected persons and their families
  • Provide information to CEO and senior team for discussion by the Board before release to share holders
  • Prepare CEO for media conference
  • Liaise with school on specific group of school children on board to help them prepare for children and parents

GoCrisis Communications Centre to activate

  • Social media teams to monitor social media and commence pro-active social media
  • Media Call Centre to take media calls, collate and report to comms team.

Family Assistance

  • Activate FAC Director, regional associates and Care Team (primarily based in Germany, and UK with support from Portuguese team)
  • Care Team languages: Portuguese, Spanish, German, French and English
  • Mental health team to Family Assistance Centres
  • Family Assistance KIT to deploy with FAC GoTeam, possibly two kits to be split between two FAC locations.
  • Client Care Team in a buddy system with one GoCrisis Care Team and one Client Care Team.
  • Once Incident Director and SVP Global Operations have met the senior management, a decision can be made on whether we need/want two FAC locations or whether it might be better to have one in Lisbon.
  • Activate plans for FAC (do this as soon as requirement is likely), set up, staff and manage FAC
  • Set up a crew FAC in nearby hotel or support families in own home, after discussing with the senior board of airline
  • Provide logistical support to secure FAC venue(s), travel, meet and greet, catering, accommodation etc.

Disaster Assistance

  • SVP Global Operations to travel to site to coordinate response
  • Establish contact with authorities to share information, co-operate and offer assistance
  • Activate two Forensic team members and equipment from UK
  • Activate two Personal Effects specialist and equipment from the UK for process and return of PE.
  • Activate 2 repatriation specialists from the UK
  • Liaise and set up mortuary facilities in Lisbon, the nearest city for Cascais as no facilities large enough in the small town.


  • Activate GoCrisis CMC (UK) to support all deployment activities, staffing, travel etc
  • Commence incident log keeping and data management
  • Commence incident-expenditure tracking
  • Commence projections for incident expenditure in week 1 – 12
  • Determine contingency fund required for weeks 1 – 12, client advise insurance broker
  • Support airline as required to establish daily conference call with broker, lead insurer, legal counsel of insurer to discuss progress, sequence of next events, requirement for funds, distribution of funds to affected families/victims, communication with affected families/victims.
  • Check the extent of any local laws that may apply to the incident (EU and British). Ensure that the Company meets each of these obligations
  • Consider the effect of the incident on company staff, particularly those from the area of the incident or those who may be closely associated with known victims. Determine what support may be appropriate to offer to staff and the timing for such support. This may include counselling, elderly and childcare, shelter or travel. Discuss bringing in psychological support for colleagues at an early meeting with senior board of airline
  • Determine the potential short-term safety and security risks to remaining customers and staff in the area or locality of the incident. Take all necessary steps to reduce the risk and to place all customers and staff in a safe environment, if relevant
  • Determine what contracted security services may be required at the incident location or area to safeguard people or Company property. Make all necessary arrangements.

GoCrisis would like to thank their dedicated GoResponders and staff who worked tirelessly to support this incident. The client expressed their gratitude in the service provided to them and the people who were affected by this data breach.

If you are interested in learning more about this incident or how GoCrisis can support your organisation in crises and disaster management, please contact info@gocrisis.com

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