Posted by Devon White on Wednesday, May 10, 2023 Under: Hotel Security
London Hotel Security. The hotel industry is one of the most challenging environments to work in – and never more so than today. The global terror threat and the recent attacks in Manchester and London in particular mean that the task of keeping your guests safe and secure is a serious business – and there is absolutely no room for complacency.
London Hotels are, in many ways, the ultimate ‘soft target’. Designed to be open and welcoming to large numbers of people, there is usually only a shallow security perimeter to breach (unlike military targets) and the potential to inflict high numbers of casualties and gain worldwide media attention.
It is not just the obvious costs of death and injury to consider, there are also the issues of damage to premises and knock-on financial effects. It is estimated that the attacks in Paris in November 2015 cost French hoteliers around £237million in lost revenue, according to research firm MKG Group.
Crowded Places Guidance 2017, a document produced by the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) contains specific advice for the hospitality industry and covers issues including mail handling, suicide attacks, car bombs and chemical, biological and radiological attacks.
In addition, Police London have a Counter Terrorism Security Advisor who will assess the threat and give you impartial advice and site-specific guidance – as well as help to identify trade bodies to supply and install security systems.
The force take a proactive approach on the issue, running a number of courses and initiatives designed to challenge and educate members of the business, London retail and commercial communities, including one, Project Argus, especially tailored towards hotel security.
London Hotel Security
Detective Sergeant Graham Milne, Counter Terrorism Security Advisor, told Hotel Security London, “Police London is involved in delivering Project Griffin and Project Argus, which are national approved courses that provide advice to businesses. The facilitation of these events is provided by trained staff without cost.
“The Project Argus Hotels product is an interactive facilitated event specifically for the management of hotels to consider how they and their team would identify and deal with a terrorist situations.
“Similarly, London security and front of house staff at hotels can attend Project Griffin events, to learn more about the current Threat, suspicious behaviour, suspicious items, bomb threats, firearms or weapons attacks and other related counter terrorist information.
Understanding what terrorists might do and how they might do it is crucial to assessing threat. Does the location of your premises, your activities or those of your guests make it more vulnerable to, or likely to attract, a terror attack? Do you already have a good security regime you can build on and are your staff aware of existing security measures? Do you have things like public safety response protocols and lock-down plans in place?
But it’s not just the threat of terrorism that London hotels need to keep on top of – internal crime like theft are also significant issues. In the UK, employee theft accounts for over £2 billion a year in lost revenue and a recent study by Expert Security UK found that almost one in five people have been affected by crime in the workplace. CCTV systems used within a London hotel, like restaurants, bars and reception, can be mini crime hotspots – and that decent cameras can help to deter this.
One of the most serious physical threats to guests and to your business is an unexpected fire. This is usually a kitchen fire, often as a result of a lack of cleaning of equipment or associated extraction equipment, but incidents can also occur due to an electrical fault or a guest causing an accident.
The June blaze at Grenfell Tower in London, in which at least 80 residents died, has had repercussions for the hotel industry too after it emerged that at least three Premier Inns have cladding similar to the high-rise block.
The hotel group said it was ‘extremely concerned’ about aluminium cladding used at its hotels in Maidenhead, Brentford and Tottenham. The chain said that the material did not appear to comply with current fire safety standards for tall buildings although it is fire retardant cladding and not the same material used on Grenfell.
Another way of protecting guests is very obviously protecting them from card fraud. And an easy way to do this is to ensure that you have a CardsSafe system installed. Customers can then rest assured that the cards retained by the London hotel are protected with the guest holding the security key to their unique box until they come to pay their bill.
All of the aforementioned have the same theme – that paying attention to detail, maintaining high standards and encouraging your staff to do the same is the key to keeping guests safe and secure.
In : Hotel Security
Tags: hotel security london