How Safe Is Airbnb?
For Thanksgiving, Zak Stone and his family booked a Texas Airbnb, complete with an unassuming rope swing. But when his dad went to try it out, the attached trunk broke and hit him on the head. He suffered severe brain damage and died. The Stone's story is shocking but not uncommon, being that Airbnb's safety standards and regulations are lacking.
"It's only a matter of time until something terrible happens," New York Times writer Ron Lieber wrote of Airbnb in 2012.
Unlike normal bed and breakfasts or hotels, Airbnb doesn't enforce or inspect for safety or cleanliness; it leaves it up to the host. Its website says, "Airbnb has no control over the conduct of hosts and disclaims all liability."
"Nothing is more important to us than safety," Airbnb said in a statement. "Over 60 million guests have stayed in an Airbnb and we are proud that accidents are incredibly rare."