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3 common injuries for restaurant workers

Working in a restaurant is no easy task. In fact, it can be hazardous to your health and safety. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 165 restaurant workers died on the job in 2016. Even if you do not experience a fatal accident, you can suffer an injury that causes you to lose wages and face medical expenses. 

It is vital to be aware of some common accidents that may occur so you can avoid them. Here is some information on how you can be a safe foodservice employee. 

1. Slips, trips and falls

Ice machines, cook stations and sinks may cause spills and result in slippery floors. It is crucial to have nonslip mats and warning signage around any slick surfaces. Crossing uneven floors or walking from carpet to tile can cause you to stumble. Blind corners, busy areas and doors can also lead to falling accidents. Keeping floors dry and clean and using two-way doors can help prevent these kinds of incidents from occurring. 

2. Sprains and strains

Musculoskeletal complications are commonplace for restaurant workers, especially waiters and bussers. Working in awkward postures, lifting heavy items and moving tables can sprain or strain your back, neck, shoulders and wrists. Your employer should train you in the right ways to lift and carry items. Additionally, you should ask for help whenever necessary.

3. Burns

Restaurants are full of hot items, equipment and appliances, such as the following:

  • Hot food and drinks
  • Hot plates
  • Stovetops
  • Deep fryers
  • Ovens
  • Oil
  • Coffee makers
  • Candles

You should receive sufficient training on how to handle any equipment that is regularly hot. Using hot pads or dry cloths while carrying hot dishes may help prevent burns. You may also want to use trays to carry several plates. 

The foodservice industry is full of potential hazards, which means you must be vigilant. Talk to your manager about any safety concerns you have about your restaurant.

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