Kitchen/Dietary Area Safety Principles

Kitchen/Dietary Area Safety Principles

​​​​​Kitchen activities and food preparation tasks can be performed safely when general kitchen safety principles are applied throughout the day. Some tasks may carry greater risks for inju​ry if specific procedures or instructions are not followed. Safe work procedures separate from these principles have been developed for these tasks. 

Kitchen safety principles include: 

  • Protect your hands and body from burns by wearing appropriate gloves or oven mitts and aprons when working with hot items. 

  • Keep flammables away from hot surfaces. 

  • Use equipment only in a manner specified by the manufacturer. 

  • Lift pot lids by tilting the far side away first to avoid scalding from steam. 

  • Do not overfill pots or containers as this will make them harder to move or carry and will increase the chance of spills. 

  • Turn pot handles inward so they cannot be bumped when walking by the stove. 

  • Do not overheat oil (to smoking) and do not pour or dump ingredients into very hot oil. 

  • Keep knives sharp, cut in a direction away from your body and keep fingers curled away from the cutting line, or whenever possible, use a device to hold the food item to be cut. 

  • Do not leave knives, blades or other sharp items in the sink. Point blades down if placing knives in vertical containers such as the dishwasher. Store knives or blades in their sheaths or scabbards. 

  • Use cut resistant gloves when cleaning sharp items such as blades or slicers. 

  • Wear closed toe, non-slip footwear. 

  • Clean up any spills immediately to reduce the chance for slips. Mark wet floors with a caution sign. Refer to SDS sheets and WHMIS protocols for cleaning spills, or when transporting, disposing, or refilling chemical containers. SDS sheets are located at _______________________. 

  • Respect your body and reduce sprains and strains: 

    • Work in an upright, straight posture. Try to avoid slouching, twisting and over-reaching. 

    • Try to alternate hands or alternate tasks to reduce repetition of the same body motion for prolonged periods. 

    • If you must lift, carry or move an item(s) first consider its weight, size and shape and get assistance or use a cart for heavier/awkward items. 

    • To lift or carry loads, bend your knees, try to keep your back upright and straight, keep the load close to your body (as appropriate) and use your feet to turn rather than twisting 

    • Store heavier stock items at hip to chest height to make lifting them easier. 

  • Keep your work area neat. Put away utensils, tools, containers, carts, etc into their appropriate place as soon as you are finished using them. 

  • Keep any electrical appliances away from water or other liquids. 

  • ​Report any additional safety concerns to your Supervisor.​

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