Introduction to Casino Safety
Ultimately, each of us is responsible for our own casino safety. We should expect casinos to have operational security in place. We decide if casino safety is sufficient and, if not, find another casino having satisfactory casino safety.
Personally, I enjoy my time at a casino better when I know and believe I am safe. Don’t you?
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Slots Players Often Carry Cash
Why develop this situational awareness for the casino environment? The answer is simple: Slots players carry cash. Unfortunately, even the possibility of carrying cash can be attractive to people having a criminal intent. Again, this is not intended to instill fear, but to point out a hard truth.
Gambling is a cash business. At some point when gambling via slot machines at a casino, players are carrying around some cash, i.e., their bankroll. With this cash in their pocket, they may have parked in a nearby parking structure, then used its elevator to reach the casino entrance.
Or, maybe they didn’t arrive at the casino with cash but rather withdrew it within the casino from an ATM. However a player actually arrives at the casino floor with their bankroll, there was a time and distance across which they were carrying cash.
However, casinos work incredibly hard to provide as safe an environment as they possibly can everywhere a patron might enjoy gambling in their establishment. But, how?
Consider what happens when winning a taxable jackpot. Players can ask to receive a check or some combination of check and cash. In my experience, it just doesn’t happen.
In all my time in casinos winning and seeing others win jackpots, only once have a seen anyone request a check instead of cash. And, that person was me. Even so, I did so only after winning a car. Even then, it was only for half of the $40,000 cash prize.
Poker players have a good solution: Bring a bag for your personal items, including cash. Yes, it’ll need to be examined by security upon entering the casino. And, yes, you’ll have to keep an eye on it at all times. But, when everyone has one, it’s inconspicuous.
Casino Security Services
What casino safety services are in place, exactly? Where should a player park, say, in the parking structure or by using the valet service? Or, perhaps top-tier players should park in the priority parking spots often provided to them?
What about when leaving the casino? What if you’ve won a jackpot, but didn’t happen to park via the valet service or in priority parking. How exactly do you get from the site of a jackpot to my car in the parking lot or structure?
How much cash is it going to take before a player starts to feel a little nervous? For me, all of my initial taxable jackpots made me a nervous, even when the largest was “only” $5,000. But, I told myself it’d simply been a long time since I’d seen that much cash.
If you’ve decided to go home, and you’re uncomfortable about how much cash you’re carrying, press the service button for a slot attendant. Once they arrive, just tell them you need security to walk you to your car.
Let’s say that you’re relatively alone in an area of the casino floor. And, suddenly, you need help. In practice, players only have three real options: press the service button on the slot machine they’re sitting at, get the heck out of the area, or yell.
A worst-case scenario, the absolute last thing to do, is to get into a physical altercation. Yelling for help is all that is needed in a casino environment, as it both acts as a deterrent to the attacker while simultaneously bringing assistance.
Finally, remember that security cameras have multiple views of every area of the casino. While it may take a moment for security to get to you, it’s all recorded.
Casino Safety IS Casino Reputation
There is no question that individual and family safety is important to you. It’s also important to casinos, as an incident wherein a crime is perpetrated upon a casino patron has equally serious consequences for the casino.
Possible damage to a casino business include a loss of reputation and income. This can occur both with the patron or patrons involved in an incident. Damage can also occur with patrons as a whole, if or when the incident becomes public knowledge.
Incidents become public knowledge in several ways, including news reporting, word of mouth, and possibly even through gaming regulatory requirements.
Ohio’s Casino Control Commission is the legal authority that regulates gaming in the great state of Ohio. Every state’s gaming commission is different. And, Ohio reports on any crimes committed at casinos within that state.
Ohio’s Gaming Crimes & Statistics are updated quarterly under their Enforcement tab on their website. If your state provides similar crime statistics, wouldn’t this information impact which casinos you like?
To help slots enthusiasts in all U.S. States, U.S. Territories, and Federal Districts, I’ve created my State-By-State Online Resource for U.S. Casino Slots Enthusiasts. Each week, working through all 56 posts alphabetically, I update the next one. As of this writing, I am currently about halfway through this series for the fourth time.
Bring a Friend for Casino Safety
At slots, players focus on a row of machines while having limited peripheral vision. They can see directly forward, where their attention is fully focused. It is quite possible to be completely unaware even if someone sits down within a couple of chairs on either side.
The best practice on being safe at a casino is simply to take someone along who can stay alert and watchful of the surroundings for a player while they face the slot machine and bet. Plus, if the player’s friends want to play, the first player can watch their back in return.
Bringing a companion mitigates many potential safety concerns found within the casino environment. And, quite possibly, it may make the whole experience more pleasurable.
A companion can act as a guard whose mere presence prevents the attempt of criminal activity. Playing slot machines isn’t like table games, where a casino employee is facing the player and the player is likely a part of a group of gamblers.
If you are alone in a casino, then you’ll need to trust and listen to your instincts. They are far more honed than most people understand. Our ancestors have left us with a legacy of amazing survival instincts whether we are consciously aware of them or not.
So, when relatively alone and someone walks up behind, take a careful look at them. How do they make you feel? What does your gut say? Whatever the feeling, trust it.
Summary of Casino Safety
Casinos are very safe places. Players probably don’t need to worry about their safety at most of them. However, like your honor, it’s intrinsically more important to you than anyone else.
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