How to improve the safety of your restaurant

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Owning and operating a restaurant is a serious business. Not only is it important to create a safe workplace for your employees, but it can also determine the long-term success of your business. Safety is very important in any business, but it's vital in areas where there are higher risks of injury and accidents. This is evident in restaurants as there are many patrons coming in and out, and public safety means good reviews. 

Kitchens are often the biggest areas of concern for restaurant safety, and that will be discussed in depth because of their importance. It should be understood that all areas of a restaurant represent concerns for safety. It's better to stay on top of any areas of concern than to have to react to an accident or injury. 

No matter what kind of restaurant you own, whether it's fast food or a 5-star dining experience, safety is paramount to success. With this information, you'll be able to implement updates to your safety policies, or include additional safety measures to make your business run smoothly and to give your patrons the kind of care and service that they would want to come back for. 

Flooring Materials 

Most restaurant owners would rather spend their money on updating things like their menu or finding serving staff. Some owners would like to spend their money on renovations as well. The problem with renovations is that they are very cost-effective, but they can provide extra safety precautions for your business. 

Kitchen flooring is often tile, because it's going to get covered in messes - mainly water and other liquids. The reason why tile flooring in kitchens is so important is that it doesn't damage as easily as more expensive material like hardwood flooring or some kind of wood-alternative. Warping is a huge issue that happens when wood flooring gets wet. Tile doesn't suffer the same fate, so it's kind of customary to keep the kitchen flooring tile. 

For the dining area, you can experiment a bit. Of course, the food quality will determine what kind of dining area you offer. Fast food restaurants are going to be frequented by children more often than a fancy steakhouse or Italian restaurant. That's why these floors are usually tile as well. Hardwood, polished concrete, and even a dark tile are aesthetically pleasing choices for the dining area. Just remember to clean them every night and use wet floor signs to prevent accidental falls. 

Utensil and Dish Holders 

Loose dishes in the kitchen, server station, and bar area can be a major concern for safety. Including racks and drawers to store and organize the utensils and dishware in your restaurant will cut down on unnecessary clutter and make your employees' lives easier. Restaurants are high-stress, high-movement workplaces, so ensuring that there are no obstacles that may result in trips, falls, or damage to people will be an essential consideration when improving the business' safety.  

Knife blocks in the kitchen are fundamental. A good knife block can keep very sharp objects from falling or cutting any kitchen staff. When your employees know where all of their tools are, they will be able to navigate better, safer, and improve service time for customers. Make sure that any areas that have a collection of glasses, dishes, and utensils are properly organized and prevent a build-up of the mess that could injure them in the chaos of a busy meal rush. 

Accident-Proof the Kitchen Appliances 

Once again, the kitchen is the most likely place in your restaurant where safety issues will occur. Organizing the utensils and dishware is a good start, but a lot of unseen safety issues can stem from the appliances themselves.  

Industrial-grade kitchen appliances are much more versatile than the ones found in a home kitchen. While these appliances are capable of cooking food faster in higher temperatures, that also presents potential dangers. Ovens, stoves, and fryers are particularly susceptible to accidents involving burns. Getting the proper protective equipment for these appliances, as suggested by the experts at https://onlinemetalsdepot.com/collections/fire-sleeve-hose-and-cable-protection or https://jsametals.com/collections/fire-sleeve-hose-and-cable-protection can stop excessive heat in your kitchen from damaging the infrastructure of the gas tubes. This will prevent any releasing of gas or flammable material into the kitchen, which can be disastrous. 

Proper Work Clothing 

The proper work clothing for a restaurant can make a big difference in preventing accidents. Slip-safe shoes, long-sleeved shirts, and thick pants are all super easy to find, and should be readily available for your employees. The slip-safe shoes are most useful for kitchen staff because they will be around spills and wet floors, and for the front of house staff (servers) because they will be running to and from the kitchen as well. They also offer padded in-soles for work shoes because the staff is on their feet for hours at a time. Preventing any musculoskeletal problems from bad shoes can save your staff a lot of money or insurance coverage that would otherwise be used for physiotherapy.  

Staff should also wear sleeves that can cover any exposed skin that could get burnt or cut during restaurant duties. Long pants are a must, too. There are work-specific pants that are a little thicker in material than regular jeans or trousers, but they aren't mandatory. They do offer a little more protection, though, and that's something to consider. 

Conclusion 

Restaurants can be a high-stress, high accident-prone line of work, but there are enough preventative measures you can put in place to keep you and your staff safe during a busy workday. How restaurants are designed can result in injuries, so there are flooring options to mitigate these potential accidents. 

Likewise, organization of the kitchen tools and outfitting the kitchen appliances with the proper protective seals on things like heating or gas lines can stop major accidents from occurring. Not all of the safety measures need to be expensive. Providing safer clothing options is another great way to maintain a safe and accident-free restaurant environment.