Even nice hotels (or maybe especially nice hotels) have their fair share of security problems – and hotel owners and managers are expected to rise to the challenge and take reasonable steps to protect their patrons.
Unfortunately, they don’t always put in the effort. Negligent security in a hotel refers to a situation in which a hotel fails to take adequate measures to protect its guests and their property from things like thefts and physical assaults on the premises. It’s also probably more common than most people realize.
What are some examples of negligent security?
Negligent security can take a lot of different forms, including:
- Inadequate lighting: Poorly lit areas in and around the hotel can create opportunities for criminal activity. Guests may not be safe from bad actors in unlit parking lots, hallways or common areas.
- Inadequate access control: Hotels should have proper access control measures, such as key card systems, security personnel and gates, to prevent unauthorized individuals from entering the premises – including pool areas, on-site restaurants and lounges.
- Insufficient surveillance: Lack of security cameras or monitoring can hinder the hotel’s ability to identify and respond to security threats. Broken or “faux” security cameras are a real problem.
- Poorly trained staff: Hotel employees, including security personnel, should be properly trained to recognize and respond to security concerns, emergencies and potential threats. They should also be prepared to verify someone’s identity before passing out spare keys.
- Not addressing previous incidents: If there’s a history of room break-ins or assaults in the parking lot of a hotel, it can be negligence to not take appropriate measures to try to stop future occurrences, like adding security guards.
- Failure to warn guests about known risks: If the hotel is aware of potential security risks in the area, such as a high crime rate due or gang violence, and does not inform guests or take extra precautions, this can also be seen as negligence.
- Inadequate room locks and safes: Rooms should be equipped with secure locks, and safes should be available to guests for their valuables.
When you pick a hotel, comfort is important – and part of comfort is feeling safe and secure in your surroundings. Unfortunately, security is often an illusion in many hotels. If you’re injured in an incident that could have easily been prevented by better security measures at your hotel, it may be time to learn more about your legal options.