Every year, Travel and Transport’s international agents take an educational trip to further their knowledge of the travel industry. This year, however, was unlike any other.
Thanks to the sponsorship of Delta and Virgin Atlantic, our international agents traveled to the UK where they were in for quite the surprise. The trip began as any other might, by reviewing the terminals, lounges and immigration/security systems put in place at Heathrow Airport in London. Next stop was “The Base,” otherwise known as Virgin Atlantic’s state-of-the-art training facility for airlines.
Here, the agents discovered they were doing more than a traditional inspection and tour. Instead, they would be participating in all the emergency trainings of an aircraft, just like the emergency airline safety training that flight attendants receive.
The agents took part in three different emergency landing activities:
- A Ground Landing – the agents jumped off the height of a 747 jet onto the emergency slide below.
- A Water Landing – the agents crawled into an inflatable life raft and unrolled a canopy to put atop the raft while being timed for speed and accuracy. The canopy increases the odds of being seen and rescued, as well as protects from rain and waves.
- A Fire Landing – the plane was filled with steam to replicate smoke while flight attendants gave out instructions on how to evacuate the plane safely. Agents learned how to open the plane’s door as well as look out for the flight attendants’ safety, as they are often left behind in emergency situations while saving other passengers.
Delta and Virgin Atlantic have paired up these past few years to provide our international agents with training and education that goes beyond fares and traditional agent duties. The goal is to train agents on safety and security as an added commitment to our customers.
“The training brought a reality to what could happen and made us realize how important these flight attendants are in the overall aspect of our safety,” said Frank Pratas, Manager of International and Executive Services for Travel and Transport. “They aren’t just serving you coffee and food, the training they receive is tremendous!”