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Missteps Physical Security Security

Misstep 2: Security-As-An-Annoyance

A locked door at a hotel pool where the gate allows easy access to the opposite handle.
So ez

I’m in Los Angeles, CA this week and my hotel has a pool. Like many hotel pools, they lock it down at a silly early hour. They also keep the area locked to ensure that the pool isn’t being abused by non-guests.

With several different shifts of hotel operators, and this hotel’s nature of having several outdoor buildings for rooms, it would be very difficult for a hotel employee to identify who is a guest and who isn’t.

While there isn’t anything of value behind this gate, it does demonstrate an oversight in design. My hands were only slightly too fat to fit next to the handle, to turn the “inside” handle and gain access. People with smaller hands, those who are clever enough to bend a wire coat hanger, and those who also really need to swim can bypass this sort of gate easily.

I’d argue that this isn’t a big deal here, since the gate is there to prove trespassing and deny liability if you didn’t belong there in the first place. Either way, an interesting conversation piece.

It should be noted that these types of lever handles are required by ADA standards (in the US) to enable people with advanced arthritis, or other physical ailments to open doors where they cannot grasp a knob. That is why replacing these with knobs is not a workable solution.

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