10 Tips to Cut Down on Kitchen Knife Injuries

Deli, grocery and restaurant workers regularly wield knives and other sharp machinery to slice and serve food to customers. This puts them at an elevated risk for cuts and other dangers. In 2009 alone, supermarket and grocery store workers suffered 4,540 injuries from lacerations.

Many cuts go unreported, and most workers don’t bother receiving first aid for their injuries. However, a small knick left untreated can become infected and lead to a host of greater health issues. You might then lose a valuable employee to sick leave or workers compensation.

Though it’s always smart to have a workers comp policy in place, you can help your workers protect themselves by stressing these 10 details in your safety training.

  1. Mesh gloves reduce the occurrence of kitchen knife cuts.Wear cut-resistant gloves made from Kevlar, chainmail or high-performance yarns.
  2. Teach workers to cut away from their bodies in case slipping occurs.
  3. Sharpen knives on a regular basis to reduce the amount of force needed to cut through objects. This provides a greater level of control.
  4. Make sure workers use the knife best suited for the job.
  5. Discourage conversation or any other distractions during risky tasks. Focus is key to safe cutting.
  6. Keep knives away from the edge of the counter to prevent them from accidently being knocked off.
  7. Teach employees to position their fingers at the top of the blade to prevent the knife from slipping.
  8. Wipe away grease or other slippery substances from knives, especially the grip.
  9. Wash and put knives away immediately after use. Leaving them in a soapy sink opens up the risk that someone else will cut themselves by mistake.
  10. Educate workers on first aid for cuts in case a laceration does occur.

If cuts become a problem, Society’s risk control team can step in to identify and eliminate key risk areas.

Watch this video to learn more about how Society’s proactive approach to risk control and loss prevention helped DeRosa Corporation reduce their workers compensation rates.

To learn more about how Society can help your business, contact your local Society Insurance agent.

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