In late spring and early summer 2022, a local indigenous group in Ecuador launched a nationwide strike and demanded a list of government concessions. This led to sporadic violence across the country, including the capital Quito, where protests blocked highways and limited access to the international airport.
While the highway roadblocks caused shortages of fuel and food, it also meant that several International SOS clients could not get to the Quito airport for flights home following travel.
Leveraging our vetted and credentialed providers in Ecuador, International SOS conducted three helicopter evacuation missions between 19 and 26 June for scholastic and manufacturing organizations. All three cases were managed by the International SOS Philadelphia Assistance Centre whose operational and security experts ensured secure transport to Quito International Airport.
After a detailed evaluation of available options, it was determined that helicopter evacuations were the safest and most cost-effective option to circumvent roadblocks and directly access the airport. The evacuations were conducted in an efficient manner and executed on extremely short notice. International SOS additionally provided end-to-end case management together with consistent communication with the client Authorized Personnel from the first call until the travellers were safe at home with their families.