Mobile Alligator Alerts at Florida Resorts

One of the largest threats to humans living in Florida is not necessarily the weather or even local insects but rather the large reptiles that can often be found in local lakes, ditches, rivers and pond areas. Alligators are simply a part of life for many Floridians and most are quite good about avoiding gators when they are in the vicinity. The problem that many people face however is that it can be difficult to know if there is an alligator close by. If we were able to detect alligators early on it would be possible to potentially prevent tragedies such as attacks and even unfortunate deaths of both humans as well as their pets, which occur almost every year.

Tourists are unfamiliar with the risks.

The Florida Disney resort, where a 2-year old little boy was attacked and died, now has a lawyer who says he told the resort and showed them a picture of an alligator in the area back in 2015. Now, you are walking in an area and you didn’t see the sign telling you that there could be alligators in the area. Two ideas come to mind from past experience working in hospitality for Hilton Worldwide. During my time with Hilton as Lead Android Designer on the HHonors app; I worked on notification elements that alerted you when your Digital Key was ready after you had checked in on your smart phone.

Solutions are definitely needed especially for protecting you and your loved ones from alligators. There are a few options when it comes to actually detecting and preventing alligators from making their way onto a resort or property across Florida. With the help of a mobile app a resort can setup either one of these systems so that guests can check in and feel safe on your property by receiving alerts to their smartphone at all times. The best part is that these services can be added directly into the application for your resort so that all guests can benefit from the system.

Example of an alert that could appear on your smart phone home screen when locked

The Geo-Fence System

Today Geo-Fences are used to create targeted marketing. A Geo-Fencing system uses location-based service data to set up a perimeter around a potential property. By setting up a geo-fence system it’s possible for a resort to send alerts to a guest who has crossed into a certain area with important information about alligators. This can prevent unprovoked attacks and accidents. Putting guests on alert can be a wonderful way for them to make sure that they are prepared to be watchful and to avoid an attack. This can deliver a powerful piece of mind especially knowing that the system will stay on consistently. A first line of defense can save lives.

Also read: Push Notification Basics Every Business Needs to Know

These types of added monitoring push alerts also improve guest experience during their stay at a resort.

The Beacon System

The beacon system is a popular option for regional monitoring and this can set up clearly defined radius points across your property. This solution is often very easy to set up and it can be done usually with over-the-counter hardware which can be purchased at many electronic stores. Region monitoring with the help of beacon technology can measure out a set geographical region. You can set up beacons across one side of a property that has water on it or across all sides of your property. By setting boundaries up with various beacons a hotel chain can send out various alerts when guests get very close to the beacons themselves. Beacons can have a radius of 25m or greater. This ensures that anyone with a smartphone and Bluetooth turned on can receive a push notification from your hotel app when they are close to a beacon which has been flagged for gator activity.

The best part about using Beacon technologies is that you can change the locations and persistently deliver warnings in front of waterways and other troublesome areas for alligators without having to consistently set up boundaries. This can be an easy system that will help guide guests around your property while preventing accidents.

Beacon System placement on a Florida resort. Once a user passes into a beach area a notification message will be triggered through the resort application.

Night Vision

Both of these technologies are extremely useful especially when it comes to going out at night when alligators are very difficult to see. Receiving a push notification from either source will likely prevent guests from venturing into unsafe areas at times when it can be difficult to predict if alligators are in the area.

If more resorts were willing to set up beacon technology or a Geo-Fence system along with signage, it may be possible to prevent a large number of alligator related incidents in Florida each year. These types of added monitoring push alerts also improve guest experience and allow guests from all over the world to have a greater peace of mind whilst staying at your resort/hotel chain. If you are a concerned property owner or you live in an area where there is no record or monitoring for alligator activity, these solutions could save lives.

I worked as the Lead Designer for Hilton Worldwide on the HHonors Android app that utilized some of the same principles that are discussed in this article. The HHonors Android app has over 1 million downloads and similar apps for other major hotel chains could receive the same support. Not only can guests at Hilton hotels experience these technology benefits from their hotel app but many resorts are using the data and the beacons for more alerts and notifications through the app too but now add alerts for alligators. Be safe!