Business Travel Advisory – 1/29/19

THE AMERICAS

United States
Travelers in Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, New England and Southeast regions, particularly Michigan, New York and Pennsylvania, should anticipate disruption associated with the passage of Winter Storm Jayden. The storm is expected to bring heavy snow, strong winds, and sub-zero wind chills as it moves southeast today and tomorrow. Blizzard-like conditions could disrupt flights at airports in the region, as well as road travel along major highways in the area.

Brazil 
Today, travelers in Belo Horizonte should avoid all protests against the collapse of the Brumadinho Dam that led to the deaths of 58 people; 300 people are still missing. Protesters have blocked multiple roads in the city, disrupting traffic. Further disruption should be expected.

Cuba 
Travelers in Havana, as well as Mayabeque, Artemisa, and Pinar del Rio provinces should anticipate significant disruption following damage caused by a tornado on January 27. Widespread power outages, damage to public and residential buildings, and local flooding have been reported in the affected areas. In Havana, affected neighborhoods include Santos Suarez, Luyano, Via Blanca, and Regla. Three people have been killed, and more than 170 injured.

Venezuela 
All inbound travel to Venezuela should be deferred through February 4 due to the ongoing political crisis and associated protests. Travelers in country should minimize non-essential movement due to sporadic unrest. Opposition-led protests have continued in Caracas and other urban centers following widespread demonstrations on January 23. Juan Guaido, the National Assembly-recognized interim President, has called for nationwide peaceful marches from 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM local time tomorrow. Similar demonstrations are scheduled across the country on February 2, though specific details have not been released.

AFRICA & THE MIDDLE EAST

Cameroon 
Travelers in Yaounde, Douala, and other urban centers should anticipate and avoid protests in support of opposition leader Maurice Kamto. The politician was arrested last night along with other key figures of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement (MRC). A related protest is planned for 8:00 AM local time today in front of the Bonajo police station in Douala, though reports indicate the prisoners have been transferred to Yaounde.

Congo (DRC) 
Travelers in Lubumbashi should avoid ongoing protests by students over an increase in tuition fees. Today, protesting students blocked Route de Kasapa near the University of Lubumbashi (UNILU) campus, before proceeding to the city center. Police used tear gas to disperse protesters along Avenue Kambove. Violent demonstrations have occurred in Lubumbashi since January 27, when at least three students were killed in clashes with security forces.

Kenya 
On February 5, passengers transiting Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (NBO) in Nairobi should reconfirm flights if a planned strike proceeds. Today, the Kenya Aviation Workers Union submitted a one-week strike notice in protest of Kenya Airways’ proposal to take over management of the airport.

Mozambique 
On January 25, unidentified men kidnapped an Indian businessman at around 10:00 PM local time in Maxixe, located 294 miles northeast of Maputo. Seven assailants, three of whom were armed, abducted the victim while he was dining with a local businessman at a restaurant. The second businessman was shot and injured during the altercation. The incident underscores the threat posed by violent crime in Mozambique and the need for precautions to mitigate the risk of kidnapping.

Somalia 
Today, travelers in Mogadishu should continue to avoid the vicinity of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This follows a car bomb outside a nearby fuel station during an inspection by security forces and reports of ongoing gunfire. At least one person was killed, and three injured in the explosion.

Uganda 
Cases of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) have been reported from various districts in Uganda. CCHF is a potentially fatal viral illness that is transmitted by ticks or through direct contact with infected body fluids. Symptoms occur within two to twelve days of exposure to infection. Symptoms include flu-like illness, abdominal pain, and bleeding. There is no vaccine available. People at risk are those who are exposed to ticks or animals and their tissues. Those in direct contact with sick people are also at risk. Travelers are advised to avoid tick bites, uncooked or raw meat, and direct contact with animals and their tissues.

Zimbabwe
Today, travelers in Harare should avoid a rally in the Central Business District (CBD) led by the Law Society of Zimbabwe. Participants will march at 1:00 PM local time from the Law Society of Zimbabwe building to the Constitutional Court. The demonstration is being held to denounce an alleged weakening of the rule of law.

ASIA & THE PACIFIC

Bangladesh 
High levels of air pollution have affected several locations across the country. Polluted air can cause symptoms such as wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and irritation of the eyes and nose. Young children, the elderly, pregnant women, and people with underlying heart or lung disease are particularly vulnerable. To lessen the risk of potential health problems, travelers are advised to reduce exposure by decreasing time and physical activity outdoors.

Fiji 
An outbreak of leptospirosis has been declared in Central Division. The bacterial disease is mainly spread through contaminated water entering the body through the skin or mucous membranes. Symptoms are often mild and flu-like, but the infection can be severe. If untreated, it can cause organ failure which can be fatal. Travelers should prevent infection by avoiding contact with contaminated waters.

India 
Travelers in northeastern states should continue to avoid protests over the Citizenship (Amendment) and Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Amendment bills. The first bill would grant citizenship to undocumented non-Muslim immigrants from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. The second would grant Scheduled Tribe status to six indigenous tribal groups in Asom state, giving them legal protections and advantages. Several protests have occurred in recent weeks to oppose the bills, and more demonstrations are planned in Guwahati and other parts of the state through tomorrow. There is potential for unrest around all related rallies.

Today, travelers in Delhi should expect heightened security and road closures for the “Beating Retreat” ceremony, which officially closes Republic Day celebrations. Road restrictions and/or closures and associated disruption should be expected around Vijay Chowk, where vehicular traffic is usually suspended from 4:00 PM to 9:30 PM local time around Rajpath, including parts of the Raisina area. Security arrangements for the celebrations will also partially disrupt Delhi metro services.

Indonesia 
Travelers in Indonesia, including Jakarta, should anticipate disruption during the monsoon season, which will last through March. Prolonged periods of heavy rain can cause flash flooding and landslides. South Sulawesi province has been most seriously affected so far, with 68 killed, 47 injured, and seven others missing. The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG) has warned of tidal surges of 2-4 meters in coastal areas. Travelers should exercise caution and follow all official directives.

Cases of dengue fever are expected to increase during the rainy season which occurs from November to April. Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral infection that is spread by mosquitoes and is present throughout the country. The disease can cause a range of symptoms and has no particular treatment. Some people, especially those who have been infected before, get a more severe form that can lead to fatal complications. Although a vaccine is available in several locations, it is only recommended for people who have been infected with dengue in the past and are living or traveling in areas with high levels of dengue transmission. Travelers should prevent infection by avoiding mosquito bites.

New Zealand 
Today, passengers transiting Wellington Airport (WLG) should reconfirm flights due to the potential for residual delays caused by heavy fog in the region. While delays to domestic flights have been reported, international flights are operating normally.

Pakistan 
Today, travelers in Pakistan should continue to monitor developments and avoid all protests after the Supreme Court upheld the acquittal of Christian woman Asia Bibi in a controversial blasphemy case. The original acquittal sparked violent and disruptive protests in November 2018 by the hardline Islamist Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) and other groups. Further protests may occur in urban centers, including Islamabad, Karachi and Lahore; however, the continued detention of protest leaders since November means these are not expected to be as severe as the previous wave.

Thailand 
High levels of air pollution have been recorded in the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Polluted air can cause symptoms such as wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and irritation of the eyes and nose. Young children, the elderly, pregnant women, and people with underlying heart or lung disease are particularly vulnerable. To lessen the risk of potential health problems, travelers are advised to reduce exposure by decreasing time and physical activity outdoors.

Today through Friday, February 1, passengers transiting Bangkok’s Don Mueang International Airport (DMK) should reconfirm flights, as one of the airport’s runways will be closed for maintenance on these dates. The runway closure is likely to cause flight delays and cancellations at the airport, which largely serves low-cost carriers. Flight operations at Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) should remain unaffected.

EUROPE

Spain 
Today, travelers in Madrid and Barcelona should continue to avoid all gatherings associated with a strike and protests against new regulations for app-based ride-share services. In Madrid, taxi drivers will march from their headquarters to the People’s Party headquarters from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM local time; a gathering will then be held at 7:00 PM local time at Puerta del Sol. Related gatherings are also likely at Madrid-Barajas Adolfo Suarez Airport (MAD). In Barcelona, taxi drivers will protest at Plaza Sant Jaume.

United Kingdom 
Today and tomorrow, travelers in England should allow additional time to complete journeys due to potentially poor weather conditions. Moderate-to-heavy heavy snowfall is forecast to affect London, as well as East of England, South East England, South West England, East Midlands, and West Midlands from 9:00 PM local time today through 12:00 PM local time tomorrow. The Met Office has issued Yellow Warnings (the lowest in a three-tier system) for snow in these areas. Officials at airports serving London, including Heathrow (LHR) and Gatwick (LGW), as well as of Network Rail, have announced enhanced snow preparedness to mitigate any disruption due to snow.