Restaurants present a number of risks to workers, whether they work in the kitchen or in the front of the house. Workplace injuries can result in missed days of work and medical bills.
There are certain injuries that are more common in restaurants, and many of them are preventable.
Common restaurant injuries
According to FSR Magazine, each workplace injury claim costs an average of $45,600. Accidents and injuries that make up the majority of these claims include:
- Cuts and punctures
- Slips and falls
- Strains and sprains
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration discusses the various strategies that can prevent or minimize the incidents of injury. To prevent cuts and punctures, workers should learn how to use the equipment properly, wear cut-resistent gloves and keep knives sharpened. Other strategies include placing a damp cloth underneath the cutting board, avoiding leaving knives to soak in water and using box cutters to open containers.
For slip and fall prevention, there should be non-slip flooring, and workers should wear non-slip footwear. Someone should clean up spills right away and place signage to warn others of a wet floor. Some strategies to prevent muscle sprains and strains include not overloading trays, using proper lifting techniques, using ladders or stepstools to reach high items, taking more breaks and rotating tasks.
To prevent burns, there should be guard bars on grills and hot surfaces. Workers should wear protective clothing such as oven mitts, gloves and proper shoes. Having equipment that automatically lowers food into grease or dumps grease also helps.
Whether someone works in the front of the house or the back, there are various hazards that can result in injury. Following safety practices and providing proper training are some of the best ways to prevent accidents.