When working in a restaurant kitchen, there is a higher chance of someone suffering a slip, trip or fall compared to any other work environment. Kitchens are always busy, full of chefs working quickly to complete their tasks and there are many hazards they need to be careful of. Wet floors, obstacles in the walkways and inappropriate footwear are all potential causes of slips, trips and falls at work. Here is how you can reduce accidents in a restaurant kitchen.
Attend to slip hazard areas immediately
Water, grease and sauces always manage to find their way on to the floor of a restaurant kitchen. In most cases, this is accidental rather than caused by negligence. When water, grease or other liquids have been found on the floor, they must be cleaned up immediately. Liquids on hard floors can easily cause someone to slip and suffer a serious injury.
You can avoid these common workplace injuries by making sure all potential slip hazards are attended to immediately.
Implement health and safety actions
When employees first start working in your kitchen, they must be told all the health and safety rules your company follows. Where can they find the fire blanket? Where is their nearest fire exit? They need to know what to do when they see a hazard.
When a wet floor hazard has been discovered, a caution wet floor sign should be placed next to it. If there is broken glass on the floor, a chef should stand nearby to alert anyone from walking anywhere near the area. Keeping to work safety rules can increase safety in your kitchen and reduce accidents from happening.
Always alert chefs to new hazards
To be a successful chef, you must be able to talk to your colleagues. Maintaining good communication helps everyone understand what is happening in the kitchen. Once a potential hazard has been discovered, everyone should be alerted.
When cooking in a restaurant kitchen, it’s easy for your mind to be focused entirely on the dishes you have to prepare and cook. But if you’re told there is a slip hazard on the floor, you'll be more be careful whilst it gets cleaned up and most likely avoid being injured.
Strict no running policy
It’s an obvious point but an important one. Chefs must always be careful in the kitchen and if someone is running, they are putting their health at risk along with their colleagues.
From a 2014/2015 health and safety report, slips, trips and falls accounted for one third of injuries at work in Great Britain.
Keep work areas tidy
Chopping vegetables, dicing herbs, seasoning meats, along with many other methods of preparing foods can easily cause food to fall on the floor. Vegetable scraps like onion skins and pepper pieces have a habit of always falling off the chopping board and landing under your feet. Whilst these hazards look minor, they can still be responsible for making someone slip.
All chefs should keep their work areas tidy for health reasons but also for safety. Encourage employees to regularly clean up any food scraps and check the floors in their work areas.
If there are any areas in your kitchen that are notorious for getting slippery, then consider getting slip-resistant mats.
Safety mats are ideal for high traffic areas like busy work stations and the doorway between the restaurant and the kitchen. They reduce the chance of slips, trips and falls in work areas that are known for getting greasy floors or water splashes.
Wear appropriate work shoes
As you’re standing up for most of your shift, it’s easy to choose your favourite comfortable shoes to work. However these are not always appropriate work shoes for a restaurant kitchen. Wearing slip-resistant shoes gives you extra grip on slippery floor surfaces.
At Shoes For Crews (Europe) Ltd, we create our chefs shoes for chefs in mind. With comfortable insoles, supportive arch support and slip resistance grip, these are the ideal work shoes for working in a kitchen. Reduce slips, trips and falls by wearing the right shoes for work.
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