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Smoke detectors

Smoke detectors react to the visible or invisible particles created by a fire; however, they do not have an audible signal. For an alarm, they need to be connected to a fire alarm system. The two most common types of smoke detectors are photoelectric and ionization. Each of these types reacts to a specific aspect of smoke. Photoelectric detectors use a light source that shines into the detection chamber. A light sensitive receiver is placed at an angle to the light source so only a small amount of light is normally received.

Security systems

In addition to Electronic Locking Systems, which appear under that title elsewhere in this book, there are other security systems that have been introduced in the lodging industry. A critical technology has been the detection of motion or presence of a person in a secured area. Microwaves may be established within a secured space that will alarm by turning on lights, providing an audible warning, or silent warning to a remote site when the wave is interrupted. Infrared technology will provide the same capability by sensing the presence of body heat.


Following the terrorist attack in the United States of 9/11, security took on a new dimension for the hospitality industry globally. A troubling fact is that a suicide bomber can neither be intercepted nor deterred. Consequently, plans must be made to mitigate the damage and accelerate the response to the victims of such an attack.


Safety involves preventing employees and customers within the hospitality property from potential death and injury, such as from accidental slips, falls, cuts, burns, and so forth, as well as preventing related property damage (Enz & Taylor 2002; Stipanuk, 2002). Hospitality organizations are semi public places, which pose certain challenges for the safety of guests and employees. However, failing to provide a safe environment can be costly monetarily, in terms of reputation, as well as in the time required to deal with the consequences.


The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), 29 part 1900, was passed into law by the United States Federal government in 1970. Its purpose is to promote worker safety and health in the United States by regulating workplace conditions and training requirements. The Act includes numerous regulations that employers and employees are required to follow.


Lock Out/Tag Out is a United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) mandated program (29 CFR 1910.147) that is designed to protect employees from the uncontrolled release of hazardous energy. The term lock out means using a lock and a device that, when in use, makes it impossible to activate a switch, circuit breaker, etc., that would energize or set a machine/process in motion endangering an employee working on the machine/process. It takes into account the total energy system sources, such as electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, kinetic, and chemical.

Life Safety Code

The Life Safety Code began its existence in 1913 when a special committee for the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) saw fit to develop standards governing the design of buildings for the effective, efficient, and safe egress of occupants during times of emergencies. It has been in almost constant revision since that time with a new edition appearing approximately every 2 years during recent times. NFPA 101 is the designation for which the Life Safety Code is otherwise known.

Legionnaire’s disease

Legionellosis, is a form of pneumonia known as ‘Legionnaire’s Disease’ and is attributed to a bacterium named Legionella. The first indication of the disease was noted in the Bellevue Stratford Hotel, which was hosting a convention of the Pennsylvania Department of the American Legion. Guests or ‘Legionnaires’ succumbed to the illness after breathing in droplets of air and water that contained the Legionella bacteria. Follow up determined that the bacterium thrived in contaminated water found in the cooling tower in the hotel’s air conditioning system.

Key control

In the past, the concept of key control usually related to a metal key. In the United States there are fewer metal keys in use as the lodging industry has moved toward the electronic guest room access card. However, there are sufficient metal keys in the international lodging industry and in ‘back of the house’ operations in the States to give special consideration to this area of security controls. The key should not have identification of the property or the room of facility number controlled by the key. Coding has been successfully used to assist in such control.