Slipping in a Restaurant

Slipping in a Restaurant

Restaurant owners are busy. I get that.

I managed restaurants in the past and have been an employee at half a dozen restaurants as well. With that being said, it is easy to forget about how slipping in a restaurant can wreak havoc on a business owners dream. Billions of dollars each year are lost due to slips, trips, and falls.

What Should a Restaurant Manager Do?

Restaurant owners/managers must be aware of these situations and deal with them appropriately. Slips, trips, and falls can happen not only to customers, but employees as well.

Restaurant owners must do their due diligence in ensuring that both customers and employees are safe from slips.

Slips, trips, and falls can happen not only to customers but employees as well.

Slips, trips, and falls can happen not only to customers but employees as well.

Are Restaurant Floors Really That Slippery?

First, take a moment to mentally visualize a restaurant, from the outside to the inside. You must walk up sidewalks and stairs just to get to the front door.

Once you open the door, you must be able to then walk to your seat unobstructed, while also ensuring that you are not losing your footing.

When was the last time the floor was swept, mopped, and treated? If not recently, slips are almost guaranteed. If recently, how recently? Are there proper signs notating this? Even if there are, how slippery are the floors?

Why are they not completely dried prior to allowing customers or even employees to walk on them? In the kitchen abounds various assortments of fryers, grease traps, ovens, grills, dish washers, sinks and other types of slippery messes!

If floors are not properly cared for, restaurant owners are just asking for lawsuits!

If floors are not properly cared for, restaurant owners are just asking for lawsuits!

Meanwhile, for both situations, there are a plethora of products restaurant owners can use to ensure that none of these hazardous situations come true.

How Dangerous Are Slippery Restaurant Floors?

There are a little over 600,000 restaurants in the United States, yet every year more than 1 million guests and more than 3 million restaurant employees are injured. Each injury can cost employers an average of $40,000 to $50,000.

Each injury can cost employers an average of $40,000 to $50,000.

This is an average and there are obviously injuries that results in much lower payout ? but there are also injuries that result in much higher payout.

Things Every Restaurant Owner Must Do

How can restaurant owners manage customers slipping and falling or employees slipping and falling? Here are just a few to get you started:

Outside

  • Is your parking lot free from debris?
  • Are your sidewalks and stairs easily accessible and also free from debris?
  • If it snows in your area, do you have appropriate measures in place to ensure the snow is removed quickly and salt laid down promptly?
  • Are your handrails sturdy, securely bolted to the ground, and non-slippery?

Inside

  • Are the floors regularly swept, mopped, and dried? If done during business hours, are signs posted and employees made aware to keep an eye on customers?
  • Are there slip resistant rugs or mats in areas that need them?
  • Is there appropriate lighting in all areas of the restaurant? We all know that getting up in the middle of the night to use the restroom is much more difficult than during the daytime.
  • Is the kitchen free from clutter and organized? Are there industrial grade slip resistant mats located throughout so that employees will not slip or fall?
  • When you sweep and mop, are you using the correct chemicals and process to ensure that, when done, the floor is no longer slippery?
  • Are your employees required to wear non slip shoes or slip resistant shoes to ensure that as they move through the building, they have a much less chance of slipping and falling?
  • These are just a few questions to get you started. The bottom line is that many people each year are affected by slipping and falling in restaurants.

Summary

It is the restaurant owners responsibility to ensure that, while these things will always be a possibility, that they have done their proper due diligence and can provide valid evidence that they have taken the necessary precautions.

Have you worked in a restaurant or visited a restaurant and had a slip and fall injury? What do you think could have helped prevent it from occurring in the first place?

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