Bars talk late night safety
Published: Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 01:09
On a Tuesday night at the bar with music blaring, a crowded, slippery dance floor and drinks scattered throughout the room, junior Maggie Di Girolamo said the scene is an accident waiting to happen.
“I’ve been burned by cigarettes multiple times,” Di Girolamo said. “Drunk people don’t always pay attention to where they wave their arms.”
Di Girolamo, who said she goes to the bars two to three times a week, understands that the patrons are responsible for their own safety. She said while managers and bartenders do their best to ensure people remain safe, sometimes spills slip through the cracks because employees are busy with other duties.
“No matter if it’s at a bar or a party, there are going to be spills on the ground,” Di Girolamo said. “It’s only dangerous if you’re wearing really high heels or if you’re really drunk.”
Kildare’s Irish Pub on Main Street and the second floor of Deer Park Tavern both have a maximum capacity of about 250 people, and both bars fill completely on weekends due to nightly drinking specials, according to The Deer Park Tavern manager Lorenzo Kozenskie.
One man was recently cut on a jagged piece of metal at Deer Park, according to Kozenskie. Grotto’s Pizza general manager Russ Wiedenmann reported “one or two” falls within the last year. Staff members from Klondike Kate’s on Main Street declined to comment about similar injuries.
Kildare’s manager Jordan “JB” Bryan said although he has not seen any accidents, just because management has not heard about it does not mean it did not happen. He said employees do their best to keep the bar area safe.
“Spills are immediately taken care of—we have six or more wet floor signs around the bar,” Bryan said. “Safety procedures are part of our standard policy.”
Senior Dave Zhao, who has been to several of the Main Street bars, said he understands the difficulty of maintaining a popular bar.
“There’s only so much you can do when people are walking all over the floors you’re trying to clean up,” Zhao said.
Bryan, who has approximately 10 years of bar experience, said bars in college towns can be rowdier than bars in other areas due to the large crowds.
Junior Tim Hagenbach, who recently turned 21, said when he has gone to Grotto’s and Kildare’s they have been crowded.
“It wasn’t too bad when we got in there around 10, but it got pretty stuffed when we were leaving around midnight,” Hagenbach said.
Wiedenmann gave no specific figures, but Hagenbach described the interior of the sports bar on the weekend as a “sea of people” and said the crowds might prove hazardous.
Wiedenmann said they clean constantly. He added that having adequate workers helps keep the bar safe, and busy shifts have more employees.
“Safety is relative to staffing,” Wiedenmann said.
He said reckless overdrinking contributes significantly to accidental injury and if a bar-goer is irresponsibly intoxicated, they are more likely to injure themselves and those around them.
Bryan said while moderation is largely the responsibility of the drinker, most bars take measures to assure that the dangerously drunk do not consume more alcohol on their premises.
“That’s one of our biggest pet peeves, over-serving,” Bryan said. “We have fewer issues of over-drinking because we have well-trained servers.”