You are a property owner. A fight breaks out on your premises. Are you liable?
According to Justia, property owners must make a reasonable effort to maintain a safe environment for visitors. Failure to keep the property safe may result in "premises liability."
In the video above, a group of young men are gathered outside a restaurant at a Dallas, Texas shopping center around 2:30 in the morning. Within minutes, a fight breaks out and one of the individuals gets knocked to the ground. The other three suspects walk away, leaving him lying alone. One of our trained security operators watched the action take place and contacted the Dallas police. Officers arrived, questioned the lone individual and placed him under arrest.
Situations like this can impact your commercial property in several ways.
People loitering or fighting on your property can turn away customers who may be afraid of their appearance and behavior. As word gets out that there could be people hanging around the premises, traffic to the businesses could decline. This leads to the next point.
Loiterers can leave a mess on your property. If that’s the case, don’t ignore it. Clean it up right away and make repairs as quickly as possible. If you don’t, that could send a message that you aren’t watching your property, which can lead to other types of criminal activity. That, in turn, can ruin your property’s image.
If criminal behavior is allowed to continue, your tenants could lose customers and revenue because of activity that goes on at your property. If customers stop coming, tenants may have to close up shop which will leave you with vacant spaces and loss of revenue.
Loitering at commercial properties can lead to other illicit activity like vandalism, fighting, damage and theft. Many properties hire security guards to help protect their investments. However, to get full coverage of the property often requires multiple guards. That can be expensive and cost prohibitive.
Owners and managers have an obligation to make sure visitors to their property are safe from dangers. That means taking reasonable steps to ensure the environment is safe. Live video monitoring is a proactive security solution that can help deter unwanted activity. Using a combination of video analytics and trained operators, we watch for suspicious activity in real time. We can activate an on-site speaker warning or call the police, as seen in the video. Calls from Stealth tend to elevate the priority level with police since are watching live crimes.
Stealth has been successful at helping shopping centers and other commercial properties safely and effectively reduce crime and increase their return on investment. For more information about how you can help protect your retail property, download Your Complete Guide to Securing Your Shopping Center Property. To learn more about our proactive shopping center security solutions, contact us.