Use of Kitchen Work Equipment
Catering equipment used within kitchens can be hazardous to use. They can result in a high risk of injuries in relation to cuts, burns, entanglement and electrocution if they are not used properly.
High risk equipment includes:
- Mechanised food preparation
- Macerators and waste disposal units
- Pressure cookers/ovens
- Deep fat fryers
The guidance below highlights what should be in place to ensure that staff in the kitchen are utilising this hazardous equipment safely and are reducing the risk from injury or loss to as low a level as possible.
Employees should be fully trained and deemed competent before they are allowed to use any pieces of equipment within the kitchen. This training should be documented and refreshed on a regular basis for employees to retain competence.
All work equipment should be subject to regular maintenance and only used in line with manufacturer's instructions. In some cases, this will require an external person to inspect and service the equipment for other simpler pieces of equipment this may just be a recorded visual inspection for fitness.
Risk assessments should be carried out for hazardous kitchen equipment. As with any risk assessment employees must be briefed on the control measures to be implemented to reduce risk levels.
Where safety guards are fitted to equipment they should be maintained, be in good condition and used when equipment is in use. Guards should never be removed or overridden when the equipment is in use as this will expose users to mechanical risks they were supposed to be protected from.
Personal Protective Equipment
PPE is an important measure not just for both food hygiene but also safety in the kitchen. Where PPE has been identified for a particular task or piece of work equipment they must be worn by staff and managers should monitor staff to ensure that they are wearing the correct PPE at all times.
Safe Working Practices
- Equipment should not be used for long duration to prevent muscle strains.
- Keep hands and fingers away from any cutting blades at all times. Especially when the equipment is connected to the power source.
- During equipment cleaning machinery must be switched off and if possible unplugged.
Questions to Consider
- Have all risk assessments been completed for the equipment that is utilised in the kitchen?
- Have staff been trained on the safety procedures to follow when using the various pieces of equipment available?
- Are all pieces of work equipment in the kitchen suitably maintained and inspected to ensure their continued safety?
- Where there are mechanical parts of equipment that present mechanical hazards, have these pieces of kitchen equipment been sufficiently guarded?
- Is all suitable PPE available to staff members in the kitchen?
- Is this PPE worn as appropriate?
- Are there documented safe system of work for hazardous pieces of kitchen equipment e.g. meat slicers, deep fat fryers, etc.
The above guidance provides an introduction on the main requirements needed to adequately manage this health and safety topic. If you require further guidance, risk assessments or template documentation on this subject please consult your relevant full guidance health and safety website (BIGGA, England Golf, Scottish Golf, Wales Golf). If you do not hold the log in details for this website, for your club, please speak to your golf club management team to identify who the account administrator is and request the details.