The purpose of the burns and scalds program is to put into place work practices and procedures to protect employees from burn and scald hazards. Burns may occur while workers are serving or preparing hot foods or drinks (coffee, tea, espresso) or while operating machinery that makes hot drinks. Carrying hot plates or plates that have been placed under heat lamps or reaching over candles placed on tables can also cause burns.

Safe Work Practices

  • Properly train employees to prepare and handle hot items and understand how to safely operate the required equipment.
  • Stand to the side when opening hot ovens and steamers.
  • Wear shoes that cover the tops of the feet.
  • Use caution when preparing hot drinks or using machines that dispense hot liquids. Don't stick hands into areas where hot coffee/liquids are dispensed.
  • Do not remove coffee pot until coffee is finished dispensing.
  • Use trays to carry hot plates.
  • Check that pots and pans handles are secure and in good condition.
  • When cooking on the stove with pots or pans, ensure that handles are not sticking out over the edge of the stove where they can be accidentally bumped.
  • Use a waiter's cloth, hot pads, or oven mitts to protect arms or hands when carrying hot plates or trays. Be aware that plates under heat lamps are hot!
  • Observe any safety procedures or wear appropriate PPE (hot pads, mitts, aprons) provided for your use while preparing hot items.
  • Do not reach over table candles while serving or removing food from tables. Do not carry lit candles because the wax can burn.
  • Do not use wet towels to grab or hold hot items.
  • Remember that items heated in a microwave continue to cook or heat after the microwave turns off. 
  • Get basic first aid training for the treatment of burns.