If your company operates in the hospitality industry, you must guard against negligence in several key areas. Hotels and resorts are more exposed to legal liability because of their close contact with the public. Fortunately, you can take some steps to prevent accidents due to negligence. Make sure to resolve any safety issues immediately. You are more likely to be found negligent if you already were aware of the problem and did not act to correct it.

General Maintenance

Slip-and-fall injuries are common hazards at hotels and resorts. You must have staff on hand to clean up spills before any guests get hurt. Use wet floor signs after mopping so guests know to avoid dangerous areas. Fix potholes in parking lots, cracks in sidewalks and broken furniture in rooms. Inspect all electrical outlets and look for other fire hazards on the premises that should be addressed.


It is your responsibility to ensure the safety of your guests while they are on the premises. Make sure only authorized personnel have access to guest rooms and common areas. Check all locks and make sure public walkways and stairwells are secure. You may need to add cameras, gates, locks, security patrols or lights in the parking lots and walkways.

Food Safety

Hospitality companies are also liable for foodborne illnesses suffered as a result of food or beverages served to guests. Institute an alcohol policy so your employees do not negligently sell alcohol to minors. Instruct your bartenders to stop serving drinks to guests who are already intoxicated. Meet with a local health inspector to check your food handling areas. Designate a clean room for food preparation if you bring in catered food. You must develop a safe food handling training course for your kitchen employees to ensure they follow the applicable health codes.

Staff Misconduct

Assault, theft, inappropriate sexual advances or other misconduct by hotel staff may also be a sign of negligence on the owner's part. Enact policies regarding housekeeping when a guest is still in the room. You may find that it works best to schedule employees in pairs so they are never alone in a room with a guest. If there is a pattern of bad behavior, you may be held liable for poor hiring practices. You should also review the actions of your front desk employees to make sure they are not adding fraudulent charges to guest bills.

Pool Safety

Drownings and other pool accidents are also common in the hospitality industry. You should have a secure fence around the pool area so children cannot wander in accidentally and have lifeguards on duty during guest hours. All lifeguards must be properly trained in lifesaving techniques and CPR. Your maintenance staff must take care of all pool equipment and apply the proper chemicals to disinfect the water so guests do not get bacterial infections.