Commercial refrigeration is an integral part of food businesses. Without the ideal storage temperature, it is not possible to keep the food stock in good condition. Food waste is harmful to the environment and the business. The best way to make sure that the money spent on the food does not go to waste it is important to have ideal storage conditions. There are different types of refrigerators available that are designed for different types of food businesses like upright fridge, chest freezers, open fridge for shop, etc. Walk-in coolers are a common cold storage solution for food businesses. They have great features to offer and flexible storage capacity.
Employee safety is essential for making sure that employees are able to work efficiently and have great productivity. Walk-in fridge and freezers are used by a lot of food businesses and to make sure that it is used properly it is important to put safety precautions in place. The walk-in refrigerators can become pretty hazardous and injure the employees.
Here are a few employee safety precautions that should be in place so that walk-in refrigerators do not become a source of kitchen accidents.
The danger of entrapment:
To get access to the food products stored in a walk-in refrigerator the employees have to enter the cooler and get it. There is always the danger of employees getting trapped in the freezer room which is a safety hazard. The walk-in coolers have features that help in ensuring the safety of the employees like safety releases that allow people to open the door from the inside.
Entrapping in a cold room is extremely dangerous as the temperature ranges from 28 degrees to 40 degrees. If a person gets trapped inside the cold room for an hour or so he/she can suffer from hypothermia. It is important for a food business to have a safety system that makes sure that no one gets stuck in the cold room. Implementing a buddy system or finding ways to keep the door open while they are inside is good for ensuring employee safety. There should also be a safety protocol of checking the door latch every hour to make sure that it opens properly and is not stuck.
Avoiding fall accidents:
Slipping accidents are also a danger that walk-in refrigerators represent. The temperature in the cold room is low and it leads to condensation. Condensation can turn the walkways of the cold room into slippery icy surfaces. To avoid slipping it is important to scrape the surface periodically. The employees should always be given safety clothes like rubber shoes that will prevent them from slipping as rubber shoes offer extra traction.
The presence of toxins:
The cold rooms should be maintained and cleaned properly otherwise it can become a health hazard. To make sure that that the food is safely stored the cold room needs to have the right humidity level. The humidity level should be sixty percent because if it exceeds seventy percent then it can lead to fungal growth.
The construction of the cold room includes wood, plastic, cardboard, etc. and these materials absorb moisture and become the perfect place for mold growth. To ensure employee health safety the employees should be educated about the symptoms of mold exposure. The symptoms include sneezing, sinus congestion, and coughing. Make sure that you regularly check the humidity level and clean the cold room.