A fire breaks out in an apartment building; A broken water pipe floods several floors; A resident collapses with a heart attack on the tennis court; An intruder roams the premises with criminal intent; and the chilly winds whipping in off Lake Michigan turn your condo’s paved surfaces into a huge ice skating rink and a liability just waiting to happen.
As a result, fire rescue and police personnel are summoned, and they rush to the scene. Until professional first responders arrive however, the situation is in the hands of the community’s on-premises staff and security providers. How does a concierge, doorman, maintenance worker, security guard or property manager learn to deal with such emergencies? In Chicagoland, training is available from many sources.
Building staff members have to handle many different problems, but there are a few situations that are more common than others. According to Jim Stoller, president of The Building Group in Chicago, which manages luxury high-rises, the most common crisis is “Someone trying to enter a property that they don't have appropriate access to. People are always trying to figure a way to get into buildings. I don't care if it's on Lake Shore Drive or if it's in one of the neighborhoods of Chicago—there are always people trying to figure out a way to get in.”
Chicago Property Services specializes in smaller properties—low-rise condos, gated communities and townhomes. President Salvatore J. Sciacca has had the same experience with that sector of the market. “Break-ins, people's units being burglarized,” he says. “That's the most typical security issue that our communities face.”