Monthly Archives: June 2013

Hospitality Industry Property Risks: Florida Restaurant Structural Damage Confirmed To Be Caused By “Sink Hole”; Large Cracks In Wall And Floor

“…Geotechnical testing performed over the past two weeks at the Bob Evans off I-4 in Seffner have confirmed that there is loose soil beneath the Restaurant Sink Hole Damagerestaurant…they are confident that what they found is responsible for the structural damage to the carryout area of the restaurant…employees noticed cracks in the walls and in the floor. Large cracks are also visible on the exterior of the Bob Evans. The bricks are also separating. After workers noticed the cracks, the restaurant did not open…”

Margaret Standing, the Director of Corporate Communications for the company, said experts found the problem between 40 and 60 feet beneath the north and northwest side of the restaurant. It has been closed ever since.

All 35 of the employees who work at the restaurant have been working temporarily at other Tampa area locations.

Standing said the company is now working to determine the best course of action. The company is evaluating options for remediating the site and rebuilding the restaurant at its current location or remediating and selling the property.

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Filed under Insurance, Risk Management, Structural Damage

Hospitality Industry Employment Risks: Massachusetts Hotel Manager Charged With Stealing Over $300,000 Over Two Years; Created Fake Employees And Cashed Checks

“…the fake employees would appear on the payroll and receive a paycheck.  Anjanel would then ask another person to cash the checks and that Hotel Employee Theftperson would give all of the money to the defendant…Anjanel would also wire the money to Guatemala, using her own name and also asking others whom she knew to wire the money on her behalf…Over the two year period, Anjanel stole more than $300,000 from the two hotels…”

A Lawrence woman was arraigned Friday on larceny charges for allegedly stealing more than $300,000 from two hotels where she worked as a manager, according to a release from Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan.

Authorities allege that in 2010 when Anjanel was working as the manager of the Residence Inn at 1775 Andover Street in Tewksbury, she was responsible for and had access to hotel finances including payroll and petty cash, as well as the authority to make hiring decisions.

According to the release, Anjanel used her responsibilities as manager to add three employees to the hotel’s payroll. These employees were never on the schedule, and never actually worked at the hotel, according to the release.

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Filed under Crime, Labor Issues, Liability, Management And Ownership, Theft

Hospitality Industry Health Risks: Oklahoma Motel “Forced To Close” By City Officials Over Bed Bug Infestation, Mold, Water And Sewer Issues

“…City officials said the motel has been under surveillance for about a year and the owners have been told numerous times to fix problems with Hotel Bed Bugs Infestationbed bugs, mold issues, as well as water and sewer…Code enforcement officers said an angry customer called them to complain after noticing bed bug bites on her children and roaches falling from the ceiling…”

A motel in Ardmore is shut down after bed bugs and other issues pose a threat to customers. The Regency Inn located on 2705 on North Commerce St. in Ardmore was forced to close its doors after it failed a city code inspection.

The motel was shut down and customers were forced to leave the building. They said the motel will stay closed until the owner’s fix the issues and it meets city codes.

The owners declined to comment but said they’ll take care of the issues.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Health, Liability, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Risk Management

Hospitality Industry Legal Risks: Massachusetts Restaurant Faces “Disabilities Lawsuit” After Terminating Employee With Cystic Fibrosis

“…(the plaintiff) claims she told her boss on March 28, 2012, that she would be late for work the Hospitality Industry ADA Lawsuitsfollowing day since “a nurse would be coming to her house to draw blood to check her medication levels.”…That was the first time Connell had mentioned her cystic fibrosis to any of her supervisors, the lawsuit says. It does state, though, that a manager overseeing her was aware of her cystic fibrosis and was encouraged to keep that information private…”

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. was sued on Monday by a former employee claiming the company violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1991. According to the Boston Business Journal, the plaintiff, Amanda Connell, filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts. Connell has cystic fibrosis and was hired to work for the company in December 2011. She worked as a crew member at the Franklin, Mass., location.

When she showed up for work on March 29, 2012, with a shunt showing partly in her arm — it was for a “peripherally inserted central catheter” — the suit says she was questioned by her boss and another manager. Connell explained that it was “for the treatment of lung disease.”

According to the suit, Connell was terminated from her job at Chipotle Mexican grill the next day.

The company has declined to comment on the incident with a spokesman saying they will not speak, pending legal action.

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Filed under Employment Practices Liability, Labor Issues, Liability, Management And Ownership, Risk Management

Hospitality Industry Health Insurance: Restaurant Industry Continues To Assess Options, Costs Of Implementing “2010 Affordable Care Act” Next January; #1 Issue For Small Businesses

“…restaurants employ roughly 10 percent of the workforce both in Georgia and nationwide. While many dining establishments have fewer than health insurance national50 employees and therefore won’t be subject to the mandate, others will be affected…the cost of health insurance has been the No. 1 issue facing small businesses, according to surveys by the National Federation of Independent Business…(margins) are so thin, there’s only X amount of dollars…(if health insurance was affordable) you’d have everybody insured.”

Steve Simon is co-founder of Fifth Group Restaurants, which operates seven restaurants and other businesses in the Atlanta area, employing more than 500 people. Currently, Fifth Group offers health insurance to its managers only.

But under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, when it is fully implemented next January, a business with 50 or more full-time workers must offer all employees working at least 30 hours a week a health plan that’s considered “affordable.” If it doesn’t, the business must pay a penalty.

Despite all the concern in the industry, some restaurant operators say the law’s impact may not be as great as originally feared. They cite the fact that to count as affordable coverage under the law –– thus escaping the penalty –– a business can charge workers up to 9.5 percent of their annual wages to pay for insurance. So if a worker is making $30,000 a year, the business can set his or her share of the premium at $2,850 annually, or $237.50 per month.

The restaurant owners say many workers will avoid such premiums by going without coverage, choosing instead to pay the ACA’s penalty of $95 for uninsured individuals.

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Hospitality Industry Property Risks: Georgia Restaurant Propane Gas Line Explodes Severely Damaging Building’s Interior And Roof; Five People Injured

“…workers installing a new air conditioning unit Saturday smelled gas and shut the propane line off at the building in Lake Park. When the line Restaurant Gas Explosion Riskswas turned back on, it exploded and destroyed the building’s roof and one of its walls…”

Authorities in Lowndes County say a propane explosion at a restaurant left five people injured and caused severe damage to the building.

Fire Chief Richard Guyton says between 80 and 85 percent of the building’s interior was damaged. Four employees and a customer were injured and information on their conditions wasn’t immediately available. Witnesses said some of the victims suffered cuts from falling ceiling tiles.

Lake Park is about 15 miles south of Valdosta.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Injuries, Insurance, Labor Issues, Maintenance, Risk Management

Hospitality Industry Property Risks: Texas Restaurant Fire Caused By “Stove Left Burning After Closing”; $10,000 In Smoke And Water Damage

Restaurant Fire Risks“…Fire officials (reported) the restaurant manager had closed up for the evening but forgot to turn off the stove. The fire caused about $10,000 in smoke and water damage to the building…”

Firefighters rushed to save a popular barbecue restaurant on the Northwest side late Saturday.
A fire broke out at the Bill Miller Bar-B-Q Restaurant in the 3200 block of Fredericksburg Road at 11:30 p.m. Saturday.

The stove caught fire but firefighters were able to quickly put out the blaze. The fire caused about $10,000 in smoke and water damage to the building.

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