Kitchen restaurant hazards: spillages and leaks
For a health and safety officer combating potential workplace injuries, you’d be hard pressed to find somewhere as hazardous as a restaurant kitchen. The environment is incredibly fast-paced, and there’s so many things that happen each day that can put your employees at risk.
As you know, part of a health and safety officer’s job is staying on top of these risks. Sometimes, though, this is easier said than done. There’s so many common risks. From blocked fire escapes to damaged electrical wiring and everything in between. You constantly have to stay on guard to make sure everyone is safe.
Liquid spillages and leaks
There is some good news, however, as one of the most common dangers can also be the easiest to solve. It’s likely that staff be working with various oils, fats and liquids on a day to day basis. If employees don’t take care with these they can end up spilling or splattering onto the floor, leaving a dangerous area for their colleagues.
Water can also easily escape the kitchen dishwasher as your staff change the racks, and sinks and basins can easily overflow leaving puddles on the floor. It’s natural for staff who work long hours to want to rush through the pile of dirty dishes as quickly as possible, but it can be hazardous for the rest of their team.
Similarly, if staff are in a hurry when transporting oil around the kitchen, the contents will likely land on the floor. In cleaning any spillages, mop buckets can easily be overfilled with water and cleaning liquid, or left scattered about in the kitchen haphazardly. It’s also really common for trips to occur with an abandoned mop bucket.
Reducing the risk to your employees
While spillages can be really common, there are a few tips and tricks you can implement right away that can help make your kitchen a safer working environment:
- Require employees to wear non-slip footwear
- Install flooring materials that have good grip
- Implement a safe transport method for oils and other liquids that move frequently around the area
- Use equipment that prevents liquids from escaping, like special mop bucket lids
- Use brightly coloured materials to draw employees’ attention to potential hazards
- Create visual cues around the kitchen that highlights any danger
Your could also design a comprehensive training manual for staff, and advise them of what the health and safety best practices are. One way to help increase the ‘stickyness’ of your training is to include visual imagery. Although lengthy training sessions and coaching are important, you also want a method that will actually resonate with your employees long after they leave the workplace.
One visual medium you should consider is cartoons. These work tremendously well, especially if they convey the information in a humorous way. I have designed a cartoon that highlights the many common restaurant healthy and safety risks, which is also light hearted and fun. You can find out more details about this cartoon here. I also offer a bespoke service, so if you have something else in mind or would like custom work done please contact me here and we can discuss.
The above cartoons are extracts from my ‘restaurant-kitchen-health-and-safety-cartoon’ which you can purchase from this link: http://www.cartoonmotivators.com/Restaurant-Kitchen-health-and-safety-hazards.html