Last week, counter terrorism officials issued security bulletins to police across the country warning hotels, stadiums and entertainment complexes about terrorist interest. While the feds claim they are unaware of any planned attacks, the Al Qaeda training manual lists these types of properties as targets.
Are hotels prepared?
Last month, The Center for Hospitality Research at Cornell University issued a report titled Safety and Security in U.S. Hotels that examined the physical attributes or features that signal safety and security in hotels. The report reviewed safety and security measures in 5,487 U.S. hotels segmented by price and geographical locations. Based on the number of safety and security amenities a particular hotel possessed, they were scored on a scale of 0-100. A score of 100 would signify the hotel had all security and safety features included in the survey implemented. The average score obtained was 70. The report concluded, "On balance, luxury and upscale hotels, airport and urban hotels, large properties, and new hotels are most likely to maintain a high level of safety and security amenities...old, small, and budget motels are the properties most challenged in providing those safety and security features that we studied."
Terrorists and Lawsuits
Should we worry? While it's no surprise that smaller budget hotels lack in the security arena, security is and shall remain a high priority for this industry. Between fear of terrorist attacks and negligent security lawsuits, hotels need to be prepared and have appropriate security and safety measures in place to protect their employees, guests, and selves as best they can, regardless of their size. A woman who was raped in a Marriott parking lot 3 years ago filed a lawsuit against the hotel claiming the event was foreseeable because the perpetrator was lingering around the hotel for days prior to the attack and security personnel didn't respond. Under these circumstances, hotels need to prove there was adequate security on the property at the time of the attack and that the event was not foreseeable.
Securitas Mobile works with hotels of all sizes providing parking lot patrols to help deter theft, vandalism and safety related incidents. Many budget hotels have our patrol officers periodically check in with hotel lobby staff, patrol guest room floors, address noise disturbances and enforce safety regulations. To discuss our full range of services or have a free security assessment of your property, email firstname.lastname@example.org.