Almost no details have been made public yet, but reports out of Atlantic City are that a man fell to his death from an upper floor at the Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa early Tuesday evening. Right now, the death appears to be a suicide.
Last night the Atlantic City Police Department put out the following brief alert:
The Atlantic City Police Department is conducting an investigation into the death of a man found near the Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa.
At 5:33 pm, patrol officers responded for a report of a man found deceased in the Borgata parking lot. An investigation by detectives determined the man jumped from the window of his hotel room. Information regarding the identity of the man will not be released pending notification to his next of kin.
A bystander, Mario Cerrito III, tweeted a short video, not of the tragic incident, but of a broken window on what he says is the 29th floor of the hotel, likely to provide perspective on how high it is. The Borgata has 42 above-ground floors.
“OMG. Was at Borgata today for film meeting and witnessed a guy jump from 29th floor to his death,” Cerrito tweeted.
“The first thing that came to my mind was a live shooting or something,” Cerrito told the Press of Atlantic City. “They finally let us out, and that’s when I looked up at the Water Club and I saw the smashed window.”
NJ.com is reporting that the deceased is a 25-year old man from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, but police have yet to release his name, so we do not know if those details are accurate.
As many poker players who have visited Atlantic City or Las Vegas likely know, most, if not all, high rise hotels either have windows that do not open or only open a few inches. This is why the window at the Borgata was smashed, rather than just opened. One obvious reason such a precaution is safety – the risk someone jumping or accidentally falling is lessened significantly if a person can’t get through an open window. At casino hotels, specifically, there is that added risk of suicide when gambling and alcohol are combined.
Also regarding safety, an open window or glass door on one end of the hotel room can cause the door to the room to slam shut on the other end, creating a greater risk of bodily injury, most likely from hands getting caught in the door.
Fire safety is not generally an issue with locked windows, as most fire engine ladders can’t reach past about ten stories and someone isn’t going to be able so safely escape from a high floor, so there is no need to allow windows to open for that reason.
Interestingly, apart from safety, the biggest reason why hotels do not permit windows to be opened is for energy conservation. Open windows would lead to a lot of overtime for heating and air conditioning systems in the rooms.