Litigation/Mitigation – a very important application for a quality video system. Everyone thinks video surveillance systems are for crime prevention, but their uses go far beyond that of normal CCTV use. One very interesting application is Litigation/Mitigation.
We live in a time where people are quite quick to sue. It seems like they are just looking for reasons to file suit. A properly laid out and installed video surveillance system can go a long way towards protecting you from these unpleasant situations. We have seen this many times.
Are the employees following safety rules? We did an install at an ice plant. That sounded odd to me, but several of the delivery drivers were getting extra product loaded on their trucks and selling it at a discount to select customers. Recorded video from the cameras stopped this, resulting in the arrest of several drivers and a warehouseman. At the same ice plant, several months later, a new employee, who had just gone through safety training, violated several rules, got tangled in machinery and was killed. This happened on camera. The video recording allowed management, OSHA, family and attorneys to see that the employee was clearly at fault, therefore no legal problems. Without the video, the outcome would have been decided in court. Another situation where good video saved the day was when I had a system at a Mercedes dealer where a customer did not see that she was too close to a delivery truck, hit it and came back into the dealership screaming that the truck had hit her. One look at the video confirmed what really happened. At two separate large auto dealerships, elderly women got out of their cars in the service lane and fell down. Both were slightly hurt and immediately started lawsuits for slip and fall. The videos showed that one caught her dress on the door latch; the other just fainted before she took a step. Both lawsuits were dropped. These could well have been hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses. Big bad car dealership vs. sweet little old ladies, who wins? Another odd one was at a bagel shop in Boca Raton. Elderly gent fainted, fell and bumped his head. His son the attorney immediately sent notice that he intended to sue for slip and fall. A copy of the video was forwarded to him and he was never heard from again.
Employee training and control
A video system gives management the ability to be many places at one time. From inside a factory to each of 16 convenience stores. Or more! No travel time wasted. You can verify that the people are treating customers properly, that sales are being processed right, that the time clock is not being abused. Do you need additional employees, or are they just standing around? Are they treating themselves to free food and drinks? You can stop that in a hurry! See a customer that needs help and isn’t getting it? Call the store and tell staff to go see that lady in the yellow dress. If you have a problem employee, you can counsel them, showing the video of his mis-deeds. If the behavior continues, he can be terminated, no repercussions. “We have it on video!” is a very strong bit of evidence. One of my favorite uses is when you see an employee going the extra mile, maybe cleaning up somebody else’s mess or going a bit extra to help a customer. Call him into the office. He will think he’s in trouble for something. Show him the video, tell him that you really like his attitude, shake hands and watch his head swell. End result – happy employee, but one that also knows he is always being watched. And everybody in the shop will know immediately the same thing.
A camera system can replace guards. Your system can be connected to an alarm central station, which can receive a signal when inappropriate motion is detected after hours. The operators can go on line and see what is happening. Don’t see anything? OK false alarm, make a note. See a kid wanting to steal a battery? Send a guard or the cops. See 4 guys with AK-47’s, getting ready to steal a truck? Send the army. The advantages are big. Responders will know exactly what is waiting for them. Much safer for them, better results for you. Oh, cameras don’t cause lot damage, don’t insult customers, don’t show up drunk, not show up, or steal. And, you will have recorded video of what really happened, not “He said, She said” We will be happy to help you set up your system to accomplish these goals.
CCTV systems can, and will, pay for themselves in many ways. Crime detection and deterrence, management control, liability mitigation, employee training and control, time saving, all of which are a cost savings. Protect yourself, install the proper system! Call us and we will guide you to improved security and piece of mind.