Las Vegas casinos: surveillance operations guard more than just money

October 21st, 20130 Comments »

Casino surveillance operations vital to more than just safeguarding money

Casino surveillance operations in Las Vegas guard a lot more than just money,A recent article by the Associated Press “exposed” the lack of of surveillance coverage in hotel hallways and elevator landing areas in the majority of Las Vegas strip casinos, boldly stating that casino surveillance operations guards money and not guests

Their “unofficial”  findings were estimated based on observations and conversations with people that have knowledge of the casino industry as well as conversations with front line employees and members of executive management of some of the Las Vegas strip casinos.

It is unfortunate that only one single aspect of casino security, namely surveillance camera coverage, was mentioned.

That very important omission could lead visitors to question their safety when visiting Las Vegas and staying in a hotel attached to a casino.

As a woman who often travels alone on business, had I read that story without having first-hand knowledge and experience within the casino industry, I most certainly would have concluded that Las Vegas hotels are just not safe.

That is certainly not the impression that casino operators or the Las Vegas tourist industry wants to portray to guests.

It is not only unfortunate, it is simply not true because in the context presented, crucial information was omitted.

The truth is that casino surveillance operations are a vital component and a part of the overall security of a hotel/casino whose functions encompass much, much more than just guarding money.

While most will agree that casino surveillance operations are focused on safeguarding casino assets by monitoring the games and the casino floor, casino surveillance operations guard more than just money. Much more.

Las Vegas casino surveillance operations are focused on guests safety too.

Casino surveillance operations guard much more than just money. (Photo: casino.org)

These highly trained teams in casino surveillance operations are privy to confidential law enforcement information, have spotted numerous “bad guys” the moment they walked into a casino and have an innate knack to spot out potentially troublesome situations.

They are able to alert, advise and even prevent adverse situations before they occur and contribute greatly to the overall safety of anyone that is in the Las Vegas area.

The article also failed to mention that each and every casino has a dedicated security team that performs separate functions from the casino surveillance operations division.

The security force is trained to keep order and ensure guests safety in the hotel and casino.

Hotel hallways, parking garages. elevator landing areas, stairwells and the perimeter of properties are just some of the areas that are patrolled by foot, bicycle and even golf carts.

A strong, competent team comprised of both security and surveillance helps to deter crime that can spill over into the hotel area by spotting out troublesome people and ejecting and/or detaining those as needed.

Security teams on the casino floor and perimeter areas maintain high visibility with some of these well-trained members authorized to carry weapons.

Security guards are also available to escort guests to their hotel room upon request and many take full advantage of this “service”, especially after winning a sizable sum of money,

Gary Selesner, President of Harrah’s and Caesars Palace, went on record to say,

As a hotel operator, I think what you really need is cameras in foyer and in the elevator.  That said, we are putting cameras in as we complete renovations because of door-push concerns.

The uninitiated might think that is as easy as spending a million dollars or so, and magically every single area of the hotel and casino is covered.

What they do not know is that all of those new cameras have to be monitored because, if they are not,  when a crime occurs, and there will be crimes since a casino environment much like everyday life is not a utopia, casino operators could potentially face enormous liability.

A major company on the Las Vegas strip, for example, a non-casino entity, to this day does not have surveillance coverage of their parking garage due to liability concerns.  They had no problem spending a substantial sum of money for the equipment and staff needed to man it.

They were concerned that if a crime was committed in the parking garage and not reported to them at the time of occurrence but later reported to authorities, that they could be held liable and were advised not to install the cameras.

Having cameras installed in the hotel hallways, particularly if visible, will have an impact on reducing hotel crime like the  door-push crimes that Mr. Selesner mentioned, and that is a good thing, however, a large portion of that benefit will likely be realized after the crime has already occurred.

With that said, placing surveillance coverage in all of the hallways will very likely become a reality in the future, especially as casino surveillance technology continues to advance.

The omissions in the recent article can erroneously lead to unnecessary panic, and ultimately lost business within certain demographics by implying that hotels that are attached to casinos on the Las Vegas strip are not safe.

Savvy marketing teams will have likely already taken steps to counteract the negative publicity the article generated

Surveillance operations guard more than just money. They contributing to the well being and safety of both casino and hotel guests as well as the overall Las Vegas community.

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Casino Industry News casino news Casino Surveillance casinos Technology Vegas News

About Chellie Cervone

A Las Vegas "native" by way of New York, I'm a professional blogger who favors all things Las Vegas and offers a unique, witty and sometimes controversial perspective. You can count on me to tell it like it is. Please visit my other sites Las Vegas World News and Celebrity Feast Connect with me on Google+ Chellies World on Google+

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