safety in the kitchen

If you follow some basic rules, this will ensure a safe, working environment in the kitchen.

  • Wipe up all spills immediately.  They make slippery floors which cause falls.  Spills can also be tracked all through the home by unsuspecting people stepping in them.
  • Clean as you go-–Keep your counters clean as you cook, and wash cooking tools as you use them.  While using raw meat, be sure to clean up immediately. Disinfect cutting tools, knives, cutting boards and counter tops to avoid contamination of other foods.  Washing dishes is not fun for everyone but an integral part of cooking. Just learn to enjoy it.
  • Chop foods on a cutting board to avoid contamination of different foods , and to keep your countertops from being ruined.
  • Handle knives and scissors carefully, never be in a hurry.  When handing them to someone else, hand them pointing down.  If you put scissors in the dish water, be sure to wash them immediately to avoid someone from accidentally grabbing them in the sink.
  • Keep all saucepan and skillet handles turned toward the back of the stove.  This is especially important with small children around.  A curious child can easily grab the handle, and cause hot foods to fall on them.  If the handles are turned back, you are less likely to bump them and cause pans to spill on the floor.
  • While cooking on the stove never keep a metal spoon in the pan cooking food. Metal is an excellent conductor of heat. The spoon will be extremely hot if left in the pan while cooking.  Use wooden or plastic handled spoons.
  • Keep potholders next to the stove, or hang them on a hook nearby. A saucepan handle may not seem hot at first, but it may feel hotter and hotter as you carry it to your work area.  While taking lids off of pans, be sure to open it away from your face and body to prevent steam burns.  Avoid marred countertops by protecting them from hot pans.  Be careful to keep dish towels and rags away from the burners in order to avoid fires.
  • Always wash your hands and pull your hair back before cooking.  Be careful not to sneeze or cough on food while preparing.  Keep a bottle of hand sanitizer on your kitchen sink for quick hand cleaning.
  • Keep all cabinets and cupboard drawers closed while in the kitchen.  You want to avoid unnecessary hurts by someone hitting their head on an open cabinet.
  • Be careful! Remember water and electricity do not mix.   Be sure to watch for standing water or appliance cords that have gotten wet before you plug them in.
  • Thoroughly cook pork, poultry, and beef. They are especially vulnerable to harboring organisms that cause illness if not properly cooked.  Use a meat thermometer to ensure proper cooking.
  • Avoid cross contamination. Raw meat and fresh eggs can contain harmful bacteria until heated properly. When preparing, keep eggs and raw meat separate from your other foods. Wash any cutting boards, knives, and counter tops that come in contact with these foods.