Workplace Injury Risks for Fast Food Employees

kitchen of a fast food restaurantFast food can be a dangerous job for many reasons. Fortunately, employees may be able to recover workers’ compensation for an on-the-job injury.

Below, learn more about common injuries and whether they may be covered by California workers’ compensation benefits. You can discuss your situation with one of the licensed attorneys at Berry, Smith & Bartell in a free consultation. Call today to schedule yours.

Common Types of Accidents at Fast Food Restaurants

Serious injuries can happen at any fast food restaurant for various reasons, including inattention, haste, and hazards on the floor. These are fast-paced environments and safety precautions may not always be taken.

Slippery Floors

Spills and puddles on the floors of fast food restaurants make it very dangerous for employees who are constantly on the move. Spills of drinks, water, and oil are often ignored as workers are more focused on fulfilling customer orders as quickly as possible, leading to falls that can cause injuries to the spine, neck, shoulder and head.

Hot Equipment

As you might have guessed, cooking equipment is a leading cause of fast food restaurant injuries. Grills, fryers, stoves and the oven all operate at extremely high temperatures. Tripping on an object and having a hand land on or in one of these can lead to serious burn injuries.

Electric Shock

Are there extension cords all over the restaurant where you work? This is a tripping hazard, fire hazard and potential electric shock hazard. Other shock hazards include exposed wires, uncovered outlets, and improperly grounded electric service.

Cuts from Sharp Objects

Knives, scissors, and blades are common tools used in fast food restaurants. When a co-worker is careless, he or she could accidentally cut another employee.

Lifting Heavy Objects

Being asked to routinely lift heavy objects while at work at a fast food restaurant can take its toll on your body even if you take the proper precautions. However, lifting heavy objects improperly or too often can easily cause injuries to your arms, shoulders, neck, head, and back.

Are You Covered if an Accident Happens in the Parking Lot or During a Fight?

There could be fights between employees or employees and customers in the parking lot of a fast food restaurant. There could also be accidents when employees go out to the parking to take out the trash or clean up.

If you were injured in an accident in the parking lot while doing work-related activities, you may be covered by the workers’ compensation system. For example, a worker could get injured in the parking lot if the restaurant provides curbside delivery or if the worker is headed out to make a delivery.

When it comes to fights, the employee is usually not covered if he or she starts the fight. This is still the case even if the employee wound up with more severe injuries than the other party. If you did not start the fight, and you were in the middle of work-related activities and the dispute was about work-related matters, it may be covered by workers’ compensation.

Safety Tips for Fast Food Workers

In order to avoid the accidents and injuries mentioned earlier, fast food workers should take reasonable precautions:

  • Wear protective gear, such as gloves, when around hot oil
  • Wear clothing that does not hang from your body
  • Wear slip-resistant shoes
  • Use tools that have handles so your hands are not directly over the stove or grill
  • Be aware of your surroundings and routinely check the floor for spills

Injured at Your Fast Food Job? Contact Berry, Smith & Bartell Today

If you have suffered an injury at your fast food job it is imperative that you consult with an experienced attorney about your situation. You may be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits for your injury.

Call Berry, Smith & Bartell today to schedule a free no-obligation consultation with a Bakersfield workers’ compensation lawyer today. There are no upfront fees and our attorneys have more than 60 years of combined experience.


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