“Active shooter” is a term used by law enforcement to describe a situation in which a shooting is in progress.
The classification calls into action protocols relating to response and reaction – not only by police but also by citizens, says the FBI. In the case of an “active shooter,” everyone’s response and reaction can affect the outcome.
The bureau has counted 288 active shooter incidents in the U.S. from 2000 through 2018.
Twenty-one of those occurred at places of business. Of those, five were at hotels or motels.
Though lodging accounted for less than 2 percent of all active-shooting incidents logged by the FBI over the past 18 years, it’s an unfathomable crisis if it happens at your property.
Many safety and security experts say hotel owners and operators must have a mindset of “not if but when” in preparing for the possibility of an active shooter on property. And some veteran hoteliers say, it only makes sense that the act of hospitality is extended before, during and after times of crisis.
Today’s episode of Lodging Leaders is the first part in a report about hotel safety. We cull information from the FBI, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), a non-profit organization that published a white paper about hospitality attacks.
We talk to Paul Frederick, a security and safety expert and co-founder of Hospitality Security Advisors, and Elie Khoury, executive vice president of operations resources at Interstate Hotels & Resorts, a third-party manager.
Also featured are Roger Bloss, a veteran hotelier who is putting his weight behind a new hotel insurance program called InsuraGuest, which plans to offer coverage for guests injured in an attack on property. Also included is Natalee Bloss, Roger’s daughter who was at the scene of the Oct. 1, 2017, shooting in Las Vegas and sought safety at her family’s hotel.
Resources and Links
For tips on what to do when involved in an active shooting incident, visit:
Bijal Patel, 31, is CEO of Coast Redwood Hospitality and the youngest chair of the California Hotel & Lodging Association. He’s made even more history at CHLA by agreeing to serve an unprecedented second term as the lodging industry emerges from the coronavirus pandemic. Patel is a third-generation hotelier. Being so steeped in hospitality at such a young age is not new for members of the Indian American hotelier community, but Patel fears the pandemic has drained the industry of emerging talent. Lodging Leaders spotlights Patel, who represents a leadership demographic that is fighting for the life of the hospitality industry as they watch their peers veer toward other career paths.
Many hotels these days have made room for guests with disabilities. Hotel managers and staff should also know what the Americans with Disabilities Act says about accommodating guests with pets. During the pandemic lockdowns, a lot of people added a pet to their household and now they’re bringing Fido along on vacation. Hotel employees need to know how to cater to both consumers who are pet owners as well as guests who travel with a trained service animal. Episode 329 of Lodging Leaders podcast reports on how the ADA defines a service animal and how a hotel is legally obligated to serve a guest who comes with a dog or any other animal.