Setting out for the remote bush in Africa needs some preplanning so that you are self-sufficient and in the event of breakdown or incident you have a plan in place. The following eight checks are a guideline but will ensure if it all goes wrong you should be able to cope.
- Arrange your back up so that if you have a problem or break down in a remote area you will be missed and reported as missing
- Ensure everyone in your party is covered by the flying doctor service so that, in the event of an accident, health issue or another emergency the rescue services will come to your aid without having to obtain prior financial clearance. Ordinary travel insurance is not enough as their 24-hour emergency cover cannot react quickly enough.
- Check that your immunisation is in order are in order some for the areas you will be visiting. Borders may want to see your health certificates.
- Have a plan for a vehicle break down which may be hours away from the nearest garage.
- Cell phone coverage will not work in many remote areas so take a satellite tracker like Inreach or satellite phone if you are not happy with being out of contact.
- Check the tyres carefully and the pressures. Ensure you know the pressures for on-road driving and gravel roads. (and have a tyre pump to reinflate tyres)
- You need to be aware of the hazards along your route such as river crossings, soft sand, detours, unsafe stopping areas due to theft etc. and be prepared for them
- Check you have emergency supplies for the vehicle and yourselves (light bulbs, spare fuel, tow rope and triangle. For your group a first aid kit, spare water and food)