How The Restaurant Industry Is Handling Renewed Active Shooter Threats

Page 2 of 1

How The Restaurant Industry Is Handling Renewed Active Shooter Threats

Restaurants, particularly fast food chains, have become increasingly common sites of deadly shootings, provoking fear in employees and concern from industry leaders about worker safety — and how the violence could drive people away from their businesses.

Three fatal shootings have taken place at fast food locations so far this year, including at a Whataburger in Tulsa, a Steak & Shake in Charlotte and a Wendy’s in Kansas City, Business Insider reported. This week, just days after two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, fast food executives gathered for a conference in Nashville to learn more about the security challenges facing the industry, including active shooters.

At the annual Restaurant Loss Prevention and Security Association Conference, attendees heard from Pete McCartney, the security director for Papa John’s International, about the company’s active shooter training and how to go “beyond the standard ‘Run, Hide, Fight,’ methodology,” according to the conference agenda.

Executives from Waffle House were also set to appear to talk about the company’s response to the 2018 shooting in Nashville that left four people dead, but the officials ultimately did not speak on the panel, according to BI. Other presentations included lessons on implementing cybersecurity solutions and preventing conflicts between customers and employees.

More restaurant companies are looking to create or reassess their active shooter training procedures, BI reported. McDonald’s added active shooter training to its available workplace safety programs earlier this year. But most chains leave it up to their franchisees to decide on the content and timing of worker training, making the implementation of such programs uneven.

And more employees are taking their safety into their own hands, making mental plans of how they would deal with a shooter in their restaurant. Courtney Botti, who works at a restaurant in Charleston, told The Wall Street Journal that she would go into the walk-in cooler and stand behind the stainless steel door: “It might be cold, but at least we’d be safe.” Experts believe the plans are less legitimate strategies than reflections of the anxiety Americans are feeling in the workplace, the Journal reported.

Beyond the safety concerns, companies like Del Taco Restaurants and Dave & Buster’s have added language on active shooter scenarios to their annual reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, CNBC reported. The corporations list the potential of an active shooter under a section of possible hazards to their businesses that is meant to warn investors about potential drops in profits and stock price.

Since 2016, The Cheesecake Factory has included the threat of an active shooter under this section, which also includes the potential financial impact of natural disasters and the downsides of opening a new restaurant too close to an existing Cheesecake Factory.

“Any act of violence at or threatened against our restaurants or the centers in which they are located, including active shooter situations and terrorist activities, may result in restricted access to our restaurants and/or restaurant closures in the short-term and, in the long-term, may cause our customers and staff to avoid our restaurants,” the report states. “Any such situation could adversely impact customer traffic and make it more difficult to fully staff our restaurants, which could materially adversely affect our financial performance.”

The risk appears to be a higher priority for the restaurant and entertainment industries as opposed to other sectors.

“As [shootings] become more prevalent, the priority starts to increase,” Paul Lannon, an attorney at Holland & Knight LLP who counsels companies on workplace issues, told The Wall Street Journal.

About the Author

Haley Samsel is an Associate Content Editor for the Infrastructure Solutions Group at 1105 Media.

Featured

  • Maximizing Your Security Budget This Year

    7 Ways You Can Secure a High-Traffic Commercial Security Gate  

    Your commercial security gate is one of your most powerful tools to keep thieves off your property. Without a security gate, your commercial perimeter security plan is all for nothing. Read Now

  • Survey: Only 13 Percent of Research Institutions Are Prepared for AI

    A new survey commissioned by SHI International and Dell Technologies underscores the transformative potential of artificial intelligence (AI) while exposing significant gaps in preparedness at many research institutions. Read Now

  • Survey: 70 Percent of Organizations Have Established Dedicated SaaS Security Teams

    Seventy percent of organizations have prioritized investment in SaaS security, establishing dedicated SaaS security teams, despite economic uncertainty and workforce reductions. This was a key finding in the fourth Annual SaaS Security Survey Report: 2025 CISO Plans and Priorities released today by the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), the world’s leading organization dedicated to defining standards, certifications, and best practices to help ensure a secure cloud computing environment. Read Now

  • Mobile Applications Are Empowering Security Personnel

    From real-time surveillance and access control management to remote monitoring and communications, a new generation of mobile applications is empowering security personnel to protect people and places. Mobile applications for physical security systems are emerging as indispensable tools to enhance safety. They also offer many features that are reshaping how modern security professionals approach their work. Read Now

Featured Cybersecurity

Webinars

New Products

  • AC Nio

    AC Nio

    Aiphone, a leading international manufacturer of intercom, access control, and emergency communication products, has introduced the AC Nio, its access control management software, an important addition to its new line of access control solutions. 3

  • A8V MIND

    A8V MIND

    Hexagon’s Geosystems presents a portable version of its Accur8vision detection system. A rugged all-in-one solution, the A8V MIND (Mobile Intrusion Detection) is designed to provide flexible protection of critical outdoor infrastructure and objects. Hexagon’s Accur8vision is a volumetric detection system that employs LiDAR technology to safeguard entire areas. Whenever it detects movement in a specified zone, it automatically differentiates a threat from a nonthreat, and immediately notifies security staff if necessary. Person detection is carried out within a radius of 80 meters from this device. Connected remotely via a portable computer device, it enables remote surveillance and does not depend on security staff patrolling the area. 3

  • Automatic Systems V07

    Automatic Systems V07

    Automatic Systems, an industry-leading manufacturer of pedestrian and vehicle secure entrance control access systems, is pleased to announce the release of its groundbreaking V07 software. The V07 software update is designed specifically to address cybersecurity concerns and will ensure the integrity and confidentiality of Automatic Systems applications. With the new V07 software, updates will be delivered by means of an encrypted file. 3