The tourism industry in the United States is replete with hazards and risks – particularly when one is not in an upscale property. Hoteliers in the U.S. spend a lot of money eliminating hazards in an effort to reduce the risk of injury and lawsuits. In India, we found that the more upscale hotels have much in common with the upscale hotels here. These hotels are very secure. Most are fenced, have security personnel on the property at all times, and many have a colorfully dressed door attendant at the entry. In India, however, as in the U.S., one finds more hazards as one visits less expensive hotels.
One hotel we stayed in that was a kilometer or two out of town was set on a large property and used 8 security persons in the daytime and 11 at night. Most hotels we stayed at had few hazards and were quite nice. One hotel, however, had several hazards that are worth mentioning. It was located in a rural area and was more of a mid-range establishment. The swimming pool area was riddled with physical hazards, the most obvious of which was uneven and broken pavement on the pool deck. There were numerous places where the pavement presented an obvious tripping hazard. Photos 2 and 3 show uneven pavement and Photo 4 shows broken pavement. A risk manager would also frown at the loose wiring at one end of the pool deck.
The walkway leading to the pool was also uneven and contained holes which might cause a trip and fall. (Photos 5 and 6) It was interesting that the pool had the inevitable sign containing safety rules for the pool. One of the rules stated “Do not enter the pool if the lifeguard is not available.” Interestingly, there was no lifeguard stand and no lifeguard for the two days we stayed. People swam anyway.
In a lobby area there was about a 6 inch drop-off. One or more parties had probably missed seeing the step-down and fallen because the area was blocked off. A cord was used to steer patrons around the danger area. The cord, however could easily go unnoticed if one were not paying close attention. (Photo 7)
There was also a serious hazard in the bathroom. There was an unexpected step-down when going from the bedroom into the bathroom. (Photo 8) In addition, there was a similar step-down when leaving the lavatory area. (Photo 9) These step-downs could result in serious falls onto a hard tile floor.
The staff at the hotel were friendly and helpful; the food in the restaurant was terrific; and the room was great otherwise. Here, as in all of India, one always needs to stay alert and watch your step. Hazards abound, but it is a great place to go.
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