Restaurants and commercial kitchens are like any industrial environment in that they require safety precautions. Kitchens provide many hazards, including hot ovens, sharp knives and slippery spots. You can reduce injuries and liability by stocking the right restaurant safety equipment. Here are five essential of safety equipment items for your Delaware kitchen:
- Personal protective equipment (PPE): PPE is a common acronym during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it also applies to keeping your employees safe. Aprons, oven gloves and non-slip footwear reduce the possibility of burns, scalds, cuts and other injuries. Disposable vinyl gloves are necessary for food safety and prevent skin and eye irritation resulting from cutting peppers and chilies. You may also want to add freezer gloves and cut-resistant gloves to your PPE supply. Employees may want to choose their aprons and footwear, but it is good to supply different types of gloves and reduce other kitchen hazards.
- Slip-resistant mats: Water or grease landing on the floor creates a slip and fall hazard. Even with non-slip footwear, there is still a chance of injuries. Slip-resistant mats cushion high-traffic areas and offer better grip. They also soften the surface, so employees feel less strain standing for hours. Not only will employees avoid bruises and sprains from falls, but it will reduce their chances of developing repetitive stress issues.
- Fire extinguisher: Your kitchen should never be without a Class K fire extinguisher. You want this specialty type of extinguisher, as it contains fire suppressants optimized for cooking oil fires. Place fire extinguishers where employees can reach them, and place several of them around the kitchen. An employee facing burns or washing dishes may not reach the fire extinguisher as someone else, so it’s a good idea to keep several extinguishers on hand.
- Wet floor signs: You need these signs for employees and customers. Spilled drinks, tracked-in mud and rain and cleanup efforts produce slippery surfaces. Just as an employee can file a worker’s compensation claim, injured customers can pursue you for liability if a dangerous condition injures them. You can reduce liability by clearly marking hazards, and a wet floor sign is a recognizable way to do that.
- First aid kit: PPE, safety features and warnings prevent most injuries, but the danger never completely goes away. Stock a first aid kit that addresses burns, scalds, abrasions and knife cuts. You can buy kits designed for the commercial kitchen and restaurant industries, and even customize them for your workforce. For example, there are kits designed for five employees and restaurants with kitchen staff up to 20. When used, have a system in place to replenish used supplies. Otherwise, you may find you lack resources if another emergency arises.
Commercial Equipment Service Inc. offers 30 years of experience in installing and repairing restaurant and commercial kitchen equipment. We hope this list of restaurant safety equipment helps reduce injuries and incidents at your Delaware business. Contact us today if you would like to learn more about safety equipment in kitchens or if your cooking or refrigeration appliances need repair.