Injury or accident can occur from anywhere, anytime, whether it is in the work place or in your own home. These injuries (in this scope covers the minor injuries likely in a cooking environment) could be possibly prevented, and where it could not but happen can be effectively handled.
Below are the practical measures that needs to be observed to avoid or at least reduce to the barest minimum: cuts, falls, burns and strains. Where it happens, some first aid measures (treatments).
Cuts: Keep knives and use the best knife for the best job.
- Take precaution with sharp instrument; keep your fingers along with other parts of your body from blade (sharp edge) or point.
- Keep shield around the sharp edges of tools so when not in use, store away in save place. Never keep knife loose with other cooking implements inside a drawer.
- When cutting or chopping, ensure you do that, this is not on a stainless steel table, not even on your hand but on the board, and from your body.
- Place a moist cloth under the board, where board slips rather than try catching a falling knife.
- Never fuss with knife. In the event you pass a knife to another, ensure that it stays pointed in the floor and not upwards.
- Wipe knife in the blunt side.
In the case of a minor cut, rinse wound within cleaning running water or wash using clean water with an antiseptic like Dettol or Salvon until wound is clean, then put on a protective glove to avoid contamination.
- Dry and clean the ground. The floor is generally slippery when wet or when fats, scraps, soap splash and drop or when nylon papers litter the ground.
- Wear non-slip shoes. Let your shoes have a very good grip on the floor.
- Look in which you walk. Avoid carrying large items as this might block your view and may lead you to lose balance.
- Make sure to clear your runway of boxes, equipment, hose and wires, etc.
- Keep your mind on what you do. Walk purposefully try not to run.
Strain: this means pulling the muscle in a wrong way or too suddenly, so the muscle gives way. This may be very painful as it can cause damage to muscle. Stress in a pace such as the stomach or chest could cause rupture from the internal lining, which could cause hernia that may require surgery. So
- Don't lift heavy object without help. Use the trolley instead.
- Bend the knees, not your waist. Keep your back straight.
- Fetch it, don't stretch for this.
- Do not show off your strength. Work gradually, don't proceed once. Lift from floor towards the chair after which towards the counter.
First Aid Treatment For falls and Strains
Result in the injured as comfortable as possible, apply cold compress (ice inside a cloth). If any doubt about injury, treat like a fracture.
Unless you play it safe burns can happen working with any form of heat. So beware of:
- Naked flame near your clothing or towel, electric heat near any part of your body, oil that fries too long and to hot, it may burst into flames.
- Boiling water too near to the surface of your kettle or saucepan can boil over and splash.
- Don't pick up a pan, pot or plate without checking the temperature.
- Keep papers, plastic aprons and other flammable materials from hot areas and do not attempt to do too many things at any given time, stay calm and don't have a hurried plot.
- Use only gas or any other source designed for the purpose.
- Burns and scalds from steam must be cooled as soon as possible a minimum of for ten minutes. This will reduce heat in the burn, swelling and pains in addition to prevent further harm to underlying tissue.
- Blisters must not be removed. A wet cloth or ice wrapped in cloth can be utilized on the injury. Remove any thing on that area of the body before swelling occurs.
- Dress area with clean, sterile materials or bandage.
- Don't use adhesive dressings, plasters or cotton wool.
- Do not apply lotions or fat towards the injury rather than break blisters, remove loose skin or interfere with the injury.
The measures discussed above are intended for minor injuries alone. A qualified physician should handle major injuries professionally.