Serving Cape Cod and the Surrounding Areas

Lesson from the Pulse nightclub killings for bar owners

The June tragedy at the Pulse Night Club in Orlando shocked many Massachusetts residents. The event should also serve as an important reminder to bar and club owners of the importance of having strong security measures in place in order to prevent their patrons from suffering serious personal injuries or fatalities in the event something goes wrong.Due to events such as the mass killing at Columbine High School in 1999, it has become imperative for business owners and patrons to determine how to best handle active shooting events. While the conventional wisdom has been that people should simply hide and wait for law enforcement officers to arrive and to save them, it may be a better idea for people to either try to flee or to fight back instead. Bar and club owners should consider installing metal-detecting security gates and training armed security guards and bouncers in how to handle active shooters. It’s a good idea for bar owners to have policies in place requiring music to immediately be turned off when fights break out until the altercations are handled. Instead of trying to hide, patrons should first try to run if they can. If they can’t, they should consider relying on their instincts to try to take the gunman down by any means they have available. Owners of bars and clubs owe a duty of care to their patrons to keep their premises reasonably safe. People who are seriously injured while at or outside a bar or club may be able to hold the property owner liable if reasonable steps to prevent assaults have not been put into place or followed. Those who are injured may want to consult with a personal injury lawyer who has experience with premises liability matters and the responsibilities of bar and club owners in that regard.