Editor, Safety & Health Practitioner

Author Bio ▼

Ian joined Informa (formerly UBM) in 2018 as the Editor of Safety & Health Practitioner. Ian studied journalism at university before spending seven years in online fantasy gaming.

Prior to moving to Informa, Ian worked in business to business trade print media, in the automotive sector. He was Online Editor and then moved on to be the Editor of two publications aimed at independent automotive technicians and parts distributors.

September 7, 2018

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In Court

Kitchen accident: Michelin-starred restaurant The Cross fined after chef slips into deep-fat fryer

Apprentice chef stepped in to 180°C oil and scalded his foot, leading to a £25,000 fine for The Cross, a Michelin-starred restaurant in Kenilworth.

Kitchen accident: deep fat fryerThe kitchen accident happened after the 18-year-old chef had reportedly been told to clean an extractor fan when his foot slipped into the fryer.

The victim, who continues to work at The Cross, was forced to undergo months of medical treatment.

According to the report, the chef had not been informed of any applicable risk assessment in regard to the task, nor had he received any health and safety training or instruction.

The restaurants owners, 3 A Pub Company pleaded guilty to a Section 2(1) offence under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. They were fined £25,200 at Coventry Magistrates Court and ordered to pay £5,900 in costs and a £170 victim surcharge.

Warwick District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Health and Community Protection Cllr Andrew Thompson said: “We work closely with businesses to encourage the highest of standards.

“We will always take enforcement action against businesses who fail to comply with the safety standards required of them and as a result put the health and wellbeing of their employees or customers at risk.”

Chef and restaurant Owner Andreas Antoia, who claims 25 years’ experience running restaurants without any prior incident, ‘accepted responsibility’ but disagreed with the size of the fine. He said: “It is clear that we take matters of health and safety very seriously.

“We employed specialist health and safety consultants prior to the accident to advise on these matters and following the incident we employed a further health and safety consultant to review our health and safety management system. The recommendations made following that review have been implemented.

“We are considering our position regarding an appeal as we feel the level of the fine to be unduly high.”

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Paul

The official response from the company appears to demonstrate overreliance on “consultants”. Clearly anyone who instructed or observed a young employee, working at height, in close proximity to and over a 180oC deep fat fryer, does not take safety seriously enough. It can be the case however that publications quote selectively from statements and therefore, in the interests of transparency I’d recommend that SHP provide a link to the full statement.