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Kitchen Injuries: Common Missteps

There are risks in every field of work. From construction worker injuries, to office injuries, and kitchen injuries— there are dangers to watch for, no matter how safe your job seems. When it comes to a restaurant in particular, there are quite a few different injuries you can sustain on a daily basis. Furthermore, from front to back of house— there are certain rules we can all follow to make sure we clock in, and out, without a hitch… 

Kitchen Injuries: Clocking in and Out Safely 

Cuts

Peeling, Mincing, Chopping, Dicing…. Prep work in the kitchen is a combination of all three, and it happens every single day. Most kitchen employees will take a turn behind the prep table, and spend a few hours getting the kitchen ready for a high volume shift. While it is protocol to be alert, wear gloves, and perform the job with accuracy— after cutting your 150th tomato, it can be easy to fall into a glazed over, robotic mode. While this is absolutely understandable, it is also the exact time when kitchen injuries can occur. Kitchen injuries can occur at any time, but when you’re feeling careless— the risk is much higher. 

Burns 

You’re working with a hot cooktop, burners, a fryer, and hot pans. All in all, you have every opportunity in the world to face injury. Especially when the kitchen gets a rush, you might have two fryer baskets, three pans, and the oven going on full blast. You’re scrambling; preparing four orders at once, and you grab the sheet pan out of the oven without a glove. In short, burns are some of the most common kitchen injuries for every chef. In fact, if you ask every chef you know— they’ll happily show off their kitchen burns with pride. Or, if they’re a baker— their caramel burn. Every chef has a burn scar, and most of them could have been easily prevented. 

Slips and Falls 

A kitchen is a dangerous place to be for any number of reasons— that’s why there is a uniform that is meant to be adhered to. From gloves, to hats, to chef’s coats, and non-slip shoes… Every piece of the uniform serves a purpose behind the line, even if it’s just keeping your clothes clean. Most importantly of all, besides gloves, is that set of non-slip shoes. A kitchen floor is covered in food, grime, grease, and spills of all kinds. Therefore, it can be way too easy to fall victim to kitchen injuries, such as a fall. But, that’s where those non-slip shoes come in… 

Firefighter Safety and Injuries

Dangerous jobs come in all forms and fashions. From a soldier, to a bank teller, and those who serve our communities— there are all kinds of risks involved in nearly every profession. However, we want to take a moment and focus on those who risk their lives daily to keep us safe, and save the things that we hold dear to us. We see firefighters on the scenes of car accidents, home fires, and just about any accident that happens in our communities. These first responders put their lives on the line every day to keep us out of harms way. But, what about their safety? Firefighter safety is something that often falls to the wayside because they’re so busy focusing on our safety. However, they are at a high risk for a number of injuries… 

Firefighter Safety and Injuries 

Sprains, Strains, and Pains 

Oddly enough, the most common injuries for firefighters to face, are sprains, strains, and muscle pains as a result of non-fire related issues. If you consider what a firefighter has to do on a daily basis— much of it is waiting to hear that call. Therefore, they might be sitting down having a meal, taking a nap, or in the shower. Next thing they know, that alarm goes off and they jump up to hit the road. These quick, jarring movements can easily lead to an injury. Therefore, when you consider firefighter safety, you have to consider the benefits of a good stretch…

Burns and Respiratory Damage 

We all remember being in elementary school and having the fire department pay a visit. They told us what to do in the event of a fire, as well as what to do if we ourselves happen to catch on fire. While this is an extremely serious issue to face— it’s not quite as common for us as it is for them. When it comes to firefighter safety, and injuries, burns are one of the most obvious injuries that people might guess. However, due to they current technology— they aren’t as common as you might think. From their suits, to their respirators— there are a lot of different pieces in play to prevent issue. However, they will still inevitably happen. 

Unexpected Falling Items 

As we’ve mentioned, burns are not massively common amongst firefighters because they have gear to beat it. However, most burns that do happen, happen as a result of a firefighter getting trapped inside of a building. They’re pulling someone out, checking for a missing animal, and next thing you know— a beam, or a wall falls down, leaving them trapped. While these incidents are largely unexpected, finding a way to keep them to a minimum is a priority in terms of firefighter safety. That’s where training comes into play…

Training and Preparation 

The majority of firefighter safety, and common injuries, comes into play in the form of proper training. A firefighter’s duty is not something to take lightly. While most firefighters know, accept, and honor that— accidents do happen. Therefore, when you face an unexpected injury, it’s important that you treat it with care. After all, not everyone can do what you do.

Muscle Strains: Your Healing Timeline

When you do heavy lifting during your work day, it can be easy to let your safe lifting techniques fall to the wayside. In turn, it can also be easy to end up with muscle strains, pains, and tears as a result. These injuries are small in the grand scheme of worker’s comp injuries. However, they can be quite pesky to deal with, and may take a long time to heal if you don’t treat them properly… 

Muscle Strains: Injury, Treatment, and Recovery 

What qualifies as a muscle strain? 

Muscle strains refer to damages made to your muscle, and the tendons that connect to it. When you put stress on your muscles during work by lifting heavy items, making sporadic movement, or something of the sort— you have the potential to face muscle strains, pulls, and tears which can stop you in your tracks. Damage to your muscles can result in bruising, pain, irritation, and even damage to blood vessels in the remote area. 

How do I know if I have a muscle strain? 

You may notice muscle strains from the swelling, bruising, redness, pain, and lack of regular mobility. You might not see a doctor for muscle strains when you receive them on your one time. But, it is best to visit a doctor when you receive one at work. You’ll need a few days to heal, rest up, and get back to 100% so that muscle strain doesn’t worsen. However, you don’t want to lose out on necessary pay when you can’t perform your full work duties. 

Claiming a strain on worker’s compensation 

To be able to take time off of work, heal up, and still receive payment— you’ll likely need to claim your injury through worker’s compensation. Speak to your employer, explain your issue, and fill out the necessary paperwork. Furthermore, you’ll have to see a doctor, confirm your injury, and recovery plan, to receive those benefits. 

When it comes to muscle strains and injuries in the workplace, do not take them lightly. While a strain might seem small— any untreated injury can turn into a big problem. Therefore, take your time, see a doctor, and follow their advice when it comes to a healing timeline. We wish you luck in treating your injury. Furthermore, we offer our condolences for this difficult time, and extend our services if you find that you may need them. 

Therefore, take your time, see a doctor, and follow their advice when it comes to a healing timeline. We wish you luck in treating your injury. Furthermore, we offer our condolences for this difficult time, and extend our services if you find that you may need them. 

Workspace Safety Measures for Business Owners

Owning a business, especially for the first time, comes with a bit of a learning curve. You have employees, finances, and sometimes— an ‘oops’ that helps you to learn a little bit more about the process. Take, for example, an accident that leads to injury. No matter your experience, it can be nerve-wracking to see your employee hurt. Not to mention, you have to provide worker’s comp, and make sure your injured worker’s responsibilities are taken care of while they’re down and out. Avoiding worker’s compensation claims is a top priority for business owners. But, how do you do that? Putting workspace safety measures in place is a first step to reducing worker injuries, and avoiding costly claims.

Workspace Safety Measures: Avoiding Costly Claims for Business Owners 

Set a standard 

The best way to avoid injury in the workplace is to set those workspace safety measures from day one. Create a protocol, set a standard of safety, and check in on those measures. Every business is different, as are the common injuries. No matter the field you’re working in, or the type of establishment— you know your business. Therefore, you also understand the risk that comes with it with it. So, you can prepare as such. As you build a business plan, make your workspace safety measures part of the process. 

Enforce those standards 

Most business owners will have workspace safety measures in mind. However, it’s enforcing those standards is the real key. Consider quarterly safety meetings where you go over stats, safety measures, and encourage your employees to watch out for themselves, and for their coworkers. Holding employees accountable for safety is a great way to start. 

Offer incentives for safety milestones 

While workspace safety measures are mostly concerned with direct safety practice— there is also that aspect of accountability. Many people are driven by the thought avoiding an injury. However, accidents still happen. Not to mention, some employees might find the benefit of worker’s compensation more appealing than working every day… So, how do you reward those who work hard and stay safe? But, also encourage those who might take advantage, to avoid doing so?

Offer incentives for hitting certain goals and practicing workspace safety measures! For every 90 days without an injury, give your employees something to look forward to. Take your employees to dinner, provide breakfast, or give them a small bonus. While these events do cost money— consider what you’re saving in worker’s compensation claims.

Budgeting Post-Injury

When you’re out of work with an injury, money can be a top concern. While worker’s compensation benefits cover 2/3 of your regular pay— that extra 1/3 will be missed greatly. You have bills to pay, groceries to buy, and a lifestyle to maintain. Therefore, budgeting post-injury might look a little bit different than it does on a regular basis. For this reason, it can be difficult to make those adjustments, and sacrifices. So, we’re here to help. In fact, we might be able to help you make even more money than you planned on. 

Budgeting Post-Injury … and Maybe Making a Little More 

Prepare beforehand 

Everyone should have a savings account just in case. No one expects to be injured on the job. But, if you have savings to fall back on just in case— that injury will be a lot less stressful to deal with. This sentiment can apply to any circumstance, or unexpected expense. So, don’t save just with injury in mind. Save because anything can happen, at any point in time. Budgeting post-injury starts with preparing for incidentals before an injury ever even occurs. 

Sacrifice a few luxuries 

Finding small ways to cut your expenses is the first step to making up for the 1/3 of your missed wages. Monthly subscriptions are a great place to start. Maybe you pay for Netflix, Hulu, makeup subscriptions, or another combination of those things. Consider cutting most, or even all, of those expenses until you’re back on your feet. While it’s no fun, budgeting post-injury means getting rid of a few simple luxuries. 

Cut the excess 

We mentioned that there might be a few ways to even make money while you’re down and out. One great way to do that, is to let go off a few items that serve you no purpose. We’re all guilty of keeping clothes, shoes, bags, or things of the sort that we never use. Consider using some of your extra time to  post your clothes or items on sale sites, such as Letgo, Ebay, or Poshmark. By doing so, you can make a little extra money, clear out your closet, and make use of all that idle time. By letting go of those unnecessary items, you might just make budgeting post-injury a little less stressful.

Consider the art of couponing 

You’re looking for ways to spend less money than usual— but maintain your lifestyle. So, consider the benefits of couponing. Budgeting post-injury might mean letting go of unnecessary luxuries. However, groceries are essential. But, they are also quite expensive. That’s where coupons come in. Take some time, do some research, and learn from those who do it best. By following certain techniques, you might find that you get certain things at a lowered cost, maybe even free. In fact, some people even find themselves making money. 

In short, budgeting post-injury is challenging, but certainly not impossible. When you get creative about saving and making money, you might find that you’re better at it than you thought. 

Workplace Illness Prevention Tactics

Most worker’s injuries that you come across are physical. A broken bone, a concussion, a bad slip… There are plenty of ways to receive an injury on the job. However, one means of injury, is illness that you contract on the job site. Just like a physical injury, workplace illness can look plenty of different ways. As many of you know, the flu has been running rampant in the Carolinas over the past few weeks. It seems like between the weather change, and kids getting back to school— most families can’t seem to catch a break. 

However, what you might not realize, is that schools are not the only place where illnesses spread like wildfire. In fact, work spaces are just as common. So, what can you do? Workplace illness prevention tactics are actually quite simple, and as an employee— or employer, there are plenty of things you can do to keep your workplace sick-free.

Workplace Illness Prevention Tactics: Fighting Flu Season 

Disinfect your spaces 

One of the most obvious steps you can take to prevent workplace illness, is to keep your spaces clean and disinfected. You’d be amazed how many germs can make their way into your workspace throughout the day. Shuffled papers, trips to the coffee maker, door knobs… No matter where you go, it is likely that someone with sickness has also been there at some point within the day or week. While this certainly heightens the risk of contracting a workplace illness— disinfecting those high-traffic areas can make a big difference. 

So, wipe down your desk, your keyboard, phone, even the communal coffee pot. Contributing the those spaces that you use, and share, goes a long way.  

Don’t take flu season lightly 

We all think that we’re immune to the sickness, and workplace illness, everyone else faces every year. However, many (or even most) of us find ourselves bedridden at the hands of that infamous ‘something going around’. The flu, along with those pesky colds we pass around, are highly contagious. In fact, a statistic published by the NORC stated that 41 percent of Americans have not, and will not, get a flu shot. Many claimed a lack of effectiveness, and nasty side effects which keep them from participating. 

However, when you’re working in group settings— you might be risking your own, or someone else’s, chance of contracting a workplace illness. 

Know your limits 

We all know how important it is to not miss work. However, the importance of not going to work when you’re sick— is also essential to understand. While we appreciate that you have a strong work ethic, consider the risk of workplace illness in doing so. Many of us have the capability to do some amount of work from our homes. So, if you are sick but still have the ability to work— consider asking your boss to be put on light duty, or remote work duty, until the illness passes.