Hotels Hit By Hurricanes Katrina and Rita
DALLAS — SEPTEMBER 30, 2005 — VingCard Elsafe is embarking on an emergency support mission to assist more than 400 of its hurricane-affected customer hotels in securing their properties and regaining full use of their VingCard electronic-locking system and/or Elsafe in-room safes. The four-state support effort, coordinated by all departments in the corporate office, will begin today in Mississippi and will conclude once all hotels have been visited.
“VingCard Elsafe is dispatching a team of technicians armed with replacement parts to visit all of our customer hotels in the Emergency Declaration States of Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas,” said George Winker, VP of North American Operations for VingCard Elsafe. “Our goal is to secure and stabilize hotels with minor malfunctions and help others which need complete electronic lock and in-room safe system overhauls so that they can reopen their doors. We know who and where our customers are, but we don’t know the extent of the damage sustained at each property.
“Any hotel with a VingCard or Elsafe system – which has special requests or urgent needs – should contact us right away at (800) 225-8464 so that we can prioritize service and dispatch our Security Recovery Team accordingly,” he said. “Our immediate goal is to re-establish a secure environment so that our customer hotels can begin providing accommodations to evacuees and emergency contractors.”
According to the American Hotel & Lodging Association, evacuees are currently living in hotels in 42 states and 250 shelters, and approximately 17,000 American Red Cross staff and volunteers are in place. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security estimates that an additional 250,000 guestrooms are needed.
“With tens-of-thousands of individuals displaced from their homes and thousands of disaster relief workers beginning to converge on these areas, there is a great need for temporary housing and other assistance,” Winker said. “The VingCard Elsafe Security Recovery Team is on its way to help hoteliers in rebuilding their businesses and evacuees in rebuilding their lives.”
Hotel Assistance Available
The American Hotel & Lodging Association is working closely with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on the Long-Term Hurricane Survivor Housing Assistance Program. To date, approximately 4,000 properties have contacted AH&LA. FEMA is first seeking contracts with hotels in the states that have received emergency declarations for evacuees, but is willing and eager to contract with hotels throughout the country.
AH&LA has established a Hurricane Katrina
Information section on www.ahla.com as
a portal for support and news on housing, employment, taxes, insurance,
loans, benefits, consultation services, legal updates and other resources.
The world leader in hotel security technology, ASSA ABLOY Hospitality has products installed in more than 33,000 properties worldwide, securing in excess of 5.5 million hotel rooms. The ASSA ABLOY Group, a publicly listed company, is a world leader in security and hospitality systems. VingCard provides numerous electronic locking system solutions, including traditional magnetic-stripe and smartcard systems, fully integrated PMS interface software solutions and worldwide service and support. Elsafe provides the only UL-listed (1037) hotel safe series on the market today in keypad and card-based models. Safes that include an internal power outlet to support recharging of laptops and camcorders also are available with a UL listing. Elsafe customers also enjoy the same worldwide service and support. The ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Group is dedicated to the hospitality industry. For more information on VingCard Elsafe, visit www.vingcard.com or www.elsafe.com.
|Also See:||Pascal Metivier Appointed President of Assa Abloy Hospitality for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America / June 2005|
|Elsafe Providing a ‘Safe’ Environment for Business Travelers and HSIA Users / June 2005|
|When Security Counts . . . Count On VingCard to Upgrade Your Electronic-Locking System / June 2005|
|Elsafe Selected by Accor as its Sole Approved Provider of In-Room Safes / April 2005|
|Elsafe Asks: Are Your In-Room Safes REALLY Safe? / November 2004|
|Ken Brown Joins VingCard Elsafe As SVP Marketing and Sales, North America / November 2004|
|Four Cornerstones Ensure Sound Principles and Fair Business Practices For ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Brands (Elsafe, Timelox, VingCard and INHOVA) / May 2003|
|Elsafe Renews Global Agreement with Starwood Hotels & Resorts to Supply In-Room Safes / March 2003|
|Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan Upgrades to VingCard Locking System to Enhance Guest Security and Convenience / March 2003|
|Elsafe Selected to Provide In-room Safes to Accor Hotels Worldwide / Dec 2002|