I’ll be honest. I’ve traveled all over the world and I haven’t thought too much about encountering land mines. I mentioned them in a couple places in my book Choose Adventure, but they generally aren’t on the top of my list for safety concerns.
I recently read some articles that made me more aware of the problem, especially in Eastern Europe and South East Asia.
Landmines: War’s Lingering Menace
40,000 people have been killed or injured by land mines in Vietnam since the Vietnam War ended. The US State Department estimates that 50-75 MILLION land mines remain unexploded in the world.
Are the Landmines in Myanmar a Real Threat For Tourists?
Syria and Myanmar are the only countries still actively laying landmines. Over 400 people a year are killed by mines in Myanmar including tourists.
What You Should Know About Landmines in Cambodia
An average of about 75 people a year are killed by mines in Cambodia.
Minefield Warnings Issued to Hundreds of Refugees in Croatia
Croatia has more than 50,000 remaining mines, killing about 10 people a year.
So what should travelers do? I think some simple awareness is probably the best option. Know if there are mines in the area where you are traveling and be cautious if there are. I found the article linked below to be a useful summary on mine detection and avoidance.
Field Lessons For Detecting and Avoiding Mines – Counter Mine Operations