Develop an Emergency Communications Plan

When traveling abroad on behalf of UT Dallas it is important to know how to manage risks and prepare appropriately.  One of the ways UT Dallas faculty, staff and students can do that is by developing an emergency communications plan.

Know how to get local alerts, warnings or emergency updates while at your destination

In any emergency, local authorities may or may not immediately be able to provide information on what is happening and what you should do. Access diverse information sources.

  • Download the ISOS Assistance App.
  • Enroll in the U.S. Department of State STEP program.
  • Search in the Country Sheet for your destination for local sources of alerts and warnings and subscribe to them.
  • Learn how your host program will provide you with alerts, warnings and instructions in case of emergency.
  • Learn what local TV or radio stations to follow for information or official instructions as they become available.

Know how to get emergency assistance abroad

Emergencies can happen at any time, determine who you will call first, second, third, etc.

  • Have with you at all times the International SOS phone number.  Get Emergency or Travel Assistance. Call ISOS 24/7 to +1-215-942-8059.  Identify yourself as a UT Dallas faculty, staff or student.
  • Search in the Country Sheet for your destination, and have with you at all times the:
    • Phone number equivalent for 911.
    • U.S. Consulate or Embassy phone number for emergencies.
    • U.S. Consulate or Embassy phone number for your emergency contacts to get in touch with you.
  • Have with you at all times the emergency contact number for your host program if any.

Know how to get in touch with your school network, carry with you the

  • Emergency phone number of your UT Dallas supervisor, RUO or academic department contact
  • Emergency phone number of your host program
  • Phone numbers of your group leader and classmates in your group. Consider before departing, getting with your group into a circle and call or text each other on your mobile devices to make sure you have everyone’s phone numbers.

Know who are your emergency contacts back home

  • Determine who do you want the University to contact in the event of your illness, injury, incarceration, kidnapping, death, etc.  Enter that information in your employee or student travel authorization request forms, and update it in Orion.
  • Determine if all your emergency contacts know what your wishes are in the event of your serious injury or death.
  • Ensure your emergency contacts can get in touch with each other and with key contacts, such as your supervisor, RUO or academic department contact, International SOS, and the U.S. embassy at your location.
  • Ensure your emergency contacts have your trip and activities itinerary.

Know how to get in touch with your emergency contacts back at home

  • Consider getting an international call plan for the time you will be abroad
  • Have your emergency contacts phone numbers in your mobile device.
  • Determine alternate ways of communicating with your emergency contacts.


Develop a Personal Emergency Action Plan (PEAP). International Risk and Safety has developed a template that you can use. Fill out the template and carry it with you at all times. Share it with your emergency contacts.  Review additional posts in the PEAP section.


The risk information in this post is retrieved from sources as listed in the post. It provides general guidance for UT Dallas travelers. Please note the published date of this post,  and go to the direct sources listed in the post for the most up-to-date information.  The information in this post may change without prior notice.