There are a lot of regulations in place to help protect customers. If you were to fail a hygiene or safety regulations audit, then the word gets around pretty quickly (thanks to the internet) and immediately it would have an impact on your business.
Here are some tips to be pro-active.
Any staff you have employed in your restaurant should be trained and competent in the tasks they complete. These tasks could be anything from a chef, plate washer or a waiter for example; qualifications will, therefore, be required in some instances. A good idea for the restaurant owner would be to understand the different levels of skill required, and when employing someone in that role, they ask for clear documented evidence that the individual concerned has completed the training they said they had undertaken.
Restaurants are sometimes audited externally to ensure they are safe, and auditors may indeed ask you to demonstrate the practice and competence of your staff; therefore, having these docs to hand would be helpful.
One of the most significant health and safety risks in the workplace is “trips and falls.” Such risks are common in restaurants for both staff and customers. If any of these have a trip and they think it is due to negligence by the restaurant owner, then it could become a very costly claim for you to settle if the person has injured themselves and decide to seek damages.
Have a good think about your workplace organization and see if there is anything that can be done differently. Simple things such as implementing restaurant booth seating other than having loose chairs and tables can help minimize risks.
A restaurant is a particular risk concerning igniting a fire mainly due to the appliances in use in the kitchen area, such as gas-powered stoves and electrical equipment. It is crucial that you understand your obligations regarding the legal requirement for fire safety, but also that you have people that are trained on what to do if one should occur.
There are several different types of fire extinguishers, but not all of these are suitable on all kinds of fires – in fact, use the wrong type of extinguisher, and you actually could make the fire spread rather than contain and extinguish.
For your customers, they will want to have the reassurance that you understand the fire risk and are in control. It would, therefore, be a good idea to make sure that the fire policy and evacuations rules are clear and visible potentially on a poster. Fire policy would also include the requirement to insert smoke and fire alarms in different zones of your restaurant with the clear indication to people on what to do if they hear the alarm sound.