Casinos in Las Vegas and Macau, two of the biggest gaming hubs in the world have been on high alert for possible terror attacks for quite a few years now. Casino operators realize that their multi-million dollar resorts are prime targets for terrorists and criminals to carry out attacks and as a result they have claimed in the past to have boosted security measures and trained security personnel to handle such incidents.
However attacks carried out at Resorts World Manila in the Philippines and Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada show that despite the additional security measure casino operators claimed to have taken, it was fairly easy for an individual to sneak past casino security and bring in high powered weapons to cause mass destruction at these casino properties.
Resorts World Manila Shooting – June
The Resorts World Manila shooting occurred in June 2017, when an ex casino employee stormed into the casino and opened fire with an automatic weapon that caused panic and chaos on the casino floor. Jessie Carlos would then go on to set gaming tables on fire which ultimately led to the deaths of 37 people, most of whom died due to smoke inhalation. One of the reasons for the failure to stop the gunman was because casino security was not equipped with proper weapons.
Mandalay Bay Shooting – October
The Mandalay Bay shooting took place on October 1 when Stephen Paddock opened fire from his hotel room on the 32nd floor on a group of twenty thousand people who were attending a country music concert in Las Vegas. The authorities confirmed that the 64 year old Paddock had sneaked in over 18 high powered weapons and one handgun. The shooting resulted in the deaths of 58 people and injured over 500, making it the deadliest shooting in U.S history.
Macau Conducting Mock Drills
The six major casino operators in Macau operate more than 35 casinos combined. They stepped up security measures after the Resorts World Manila shooting and announced that they would once again review casino security measures in light of the Mandalay Bay shooting.
Macau’s Judiciary Police, the gaming regulator and representatives of the six major casino operators met earlier this week to discuss security measures for Macau’s casino resorts and methods to keep casino patrons protected in case such situations occur. Macau’s director of Judiciary Police, Chau Wai Kuong said that at the moment Macau had a very low risk of attack but still recommended that casino operators take precautions to ensure they were well prepared in case of such an attack.
Macau’s authorities have recommended that casino operators conduct mock drills of possible attacks at their casinos and provide their front line casino employees with training to prepare them to necessary action in case they are faced with such a scenario. The authorities also recommended that physical training be given to frontline workers so that they know how to handle stay calm and limit the amount of casualties if faced with an emergency situation. Casino operators have also been asked to purchase metal detectors, protective equipment and put together a special action team that will be fully trained to handle critical situations.
Macau Casino Operators Open To Using Metal Detectors
There were a few Las Vegas casino operators who were not keen on using metal detectors at their casino resorts as they felt it would harass their guests and create unnecessary tension. Macau casino operators have brushed these concerns aside and have agreed to subject all visitors to metal detection tests and will install metal detectors at all entrances. They will also have a strict policy to ensure that no luggage is allowed on the gaming floor.
Paulo Martins Chan, who heads gaming regulation in Macau confirmed that all casino operators had already purchased metal detection devices and would have it installed at the earliest. Chan was confident that these measures would help to reduce potential attacks and discourage criminals from planning attacks at Macau’s casinos.
Wynn Resorts has been one of the first casino operators in Las Vegas to announce that they had started using metal detectors at their properties. It is highly likely that other casino operators in Las Vegas will also start using metal detectors at their properties, after seeing that it is has become mandatory at all Macau casino properties.

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