Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Veteran, Local Service Dog Turned Away From Hotel”

“…He went to Panama City Beach with his dog, which he depends on, along with his parents and his roommate.Karl-Fleming-and-dog He went looking for a hotel room at the Front Beach Inn….Fleming said he was yelled at by the front desk clerk and told she had no vacancies when the sign out front read vacancy. Fleming said she later told police they had rooms…”

Karl Fleming was just looking to do something fun at the request of his family, but it turned into a distressing situation when he and his service dog were turned away from a hotel.

Army veteran Fleming attended K9s for Warriors camp in Ponte Vedra Beach. He graduated with his service dog ‘Kuchar’ last year and moved on, ready to face the world. But Wednesday night he had a setback.

Fleming has a traumatic brain injury as a result of a rocket propelled grenade while he was serving in Afghanistan in 2011.

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For a brief video on some of the steps you can take to help train your front desk staff at your hotel, check out the video below:

Petra Risk Solutions’ Loss Control Manager, Marco Johnson, offers a P3 Hospitality Risk Report – ‘Front Desk Best Practices’. 

P3 (Petra Plus Process) is the Risk Management Division of Petra Risk Solutions – America ’s largest independent insurance brokerage devoted exclusively to the hospitality marketplace.

For more information on Petra and P3 visit or call 800.466.8951.

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Filed under Training, Management And Ownership, Guest Issues, Employee Practices, Hotel Employees, Hotel Industry

Hospitality Industry Security Update: “Black Hat Preview Shows Hotels, IoT Vulnerable to Hacks”

“…With an increasing number of devices connected to the Internet, the use of insecure or improperly configured devices and protocols becomes a greater riskalertsystem1…Insecurity at hotel locations overall is not a new topic for the Black Hat conference. Back in 2012, security researcher Cody Brocious detailed an open-source system he built that could hack into hotel key-card systems…”

During a session at the upcoming Black Hat security conference that starts Aug. 5 in Las Vegas, independent security consultant Jesus Molina is set to expose the risks of hotel automation systems. In a Black Hat preview webcast July 18, Molina provided a few details on his talk “Learn How to Control Every Room at a Luxury Hotel Remotely: The Dangers of Insecure Home Automation Deployment.”

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Hospitality Industry Technology Update: “In Marriott’s Newest Flagship, Tech is all Behind the Scenes and in Your Hand”

“…Research is showing that more hotel guests are starting to demand certain techie Research company SmartBrief found that 45 percent of hotels guests travel with two mobile devices – 40 percent carry three. And with these devices, guests are demanding more charging options, mobile-based automated services like check-in/check-out, digital signage in the lobby, sophisticated meeting rooms, and customer service via social media…”

As technology continues to dictate our everyday lives, we seemingly anticipate our environment to respond in the same manner. There are numerous products designed to make our homes smarter, and even restaurants are using tablets to do away with traditional wait staff. In the travel and hospitality sector, some hotels are adapting to new tech trends by adding things like automated blinds, TVs embedded in bathroom mirrors, sophisticated radios with iPhone docks, iPads in lounges, or even a robotic luggage handler (it’s real, it’s called the Yobot, and it’s at the Yotel in New York City).

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Hospitality Industry Security Update: “Secret Service Warns Hotels of Data Theft”

“…Given that users at hotels use public computers to check email, print boarding passes, pay for travel arrangements and download private business information,SecretService it’s not too hard to imagine what an imaginative hacker could do with this information. Worse still, there isn’t much that even a savvy hotel operator can do to prevent this misuse…”

The Secret Service has confirmed what you’ve probably suspected for a long time: Public computers at hotels are ridiculously insecure, and you’re taking a gamble with your personal data each time you use one.

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Hospitality Industry Insurance Update: “Federal Backstop for Terrorism Insurance Set to Expire”

“…In 2002, Congress stepped in and passed the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA),hotel lobby a public-private partnership that provides a federal backstop against losses from a terrorist attack. But the law is scheduled to expire at the end of this year, and the two competing bills that would renew it lay out different visions of how much federal help private insurers should get…”

When a large hotel near the World Trade Center was destroyed in the 9/11 attacks and a second one severely damaged, the company that owned them — like many other businesses — was relieved they were covered by insurance.

But after 9/11, the insurance industry, which ended up sustaining an estimated $32.5 billion in total losses, grew skittish and began excluding terrorism from commercial policies nationwide. That resulted in businesses having less terrorism coverage or none at all. States and cities worried lenders wouldn’t approve loans to businesses that didn’t have terrorism coverage, potentially stunting economic development and harming real estate markets.

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Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Smoke Alarm Laws Taking Effect”

“…The biggest change, which took effect July 1, 20140225165058_87769requires all new battery-operated smoke alarms sold in California to be built with a nonremovable 10-year battery. Existing smoke detectors don’t have to be replaced until they reach the end of their 10-year lifespan or start malfunctioning…”

New smoke detector laws, including a change that took effect July 1, are intended to keep working alarms in rental properties and homes in Tracy and throughout California.

State Senate Bills 1394 and 745 are phasing in rules for installation and types of smoke alarms during the next two years.

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Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Small Palm Springs Hotels Slapped with Disability Lawsuits”

“…The lawsuit claims Langer wanted to stay at her hotel back in March,calla lily inn palm springs - 01 but it didn’t have a parking space compliant with the American with Disabilities Act. Other hotel owners on Belardo Road said they’re getting sued for the same issue and were surprised to discover Langer has a reputation for filing lawsuits…”

Leslie Dunn owns the Calla Lily Inn in Palm Springs. The boutique hotel, built in the 1950s, has nine rooms and nine parking spots.

Her business is among at least four small Palm Springs hotels, including the Del Marcos Hotel and Chase Hotel, getting sued by Chris Langer, of San Diego, for not having handicapped accessible parking available on their property.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Liability, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Risk Management