10 Food Truck Safety Awareness Tipsby A. Montalbano on 09/09/15
It is 6 a.m. Got your morning brew on the percolator, printed your to-do list, your route map schedule and heading out to market. En route to market you stop to check your food truck to make sure all equipment is in order and ready to fire up on the spot. The storage garaging your truck has been broken into. The generator and register is stolen off your truck. Any loss may be expensive if no insurance is involved. But what if life is at stake?
Regulations are heavy in regards to food safety and truck maintenance. But the safety of operators need to be on the daily agenda just as the importance of the menu and the location map. AGIS keeps abreast of the food truck industry and safety in mind. We have listed life concerns for food truck operators and what to do to keep yourself, your staff and your business safe:
1. Theft: When you are not looking, your unlocked or unbolted equipment is swiped. Although insurance can get you back in operation, as a policyholder you are obligated to prevent theft. Installing cameras, locks, alarms, and mirrors makes thieves aware that you are one step ahead of their game.
2. Robbery: Robberies are rampant these days and can turn violent. Don't operate your truck alone. Involve an operation circle of other food trucks is safe and usually can deter a desperate criminal.
3. Heavy Crime Hot-Beds: Know your surroundings: Routing a map of locations takes awareness. Not all street corners are a smart move. So learn the areas crime rate.
4. Don't allow cash as payment: Criminals stake out easy targets. Accept other forms of payment. Hang a sign out about forms of payment.
5. Keep Law Enforcement #s Within Reach: Know the cop on the beat. And keep rapport with law enforcement because they too have tips on how to be safe on the streets.
6. Lock all Doors: Doors and sliding windows need to be tamper proof too. Smart trucks use small openings to accept payment and distribute food. Never open doors to a knock even if you think you know who it may be. And don't leave the truck unattended.
7. Invest in Your Staff: Not just monetarily, benefits are essential to keeping a strong operation. Workers Comp is an important tool when you have staff on board. If they become hurt on the job due to a criminal activity or any unsafe incident, you as an operator are responsible. Take care of your staff and they will take care of you and your business.
8. Opening and Closing Shop: Founder of AGIS was a food trailer operator and knows it takes at least a 2-man operation to make a daily schedule. If you must operator alone, make sure you operate in a food truck circle. No need to have someone stay the entirety. Have a back-up help you open and set-up. Do the same at closing.
9. Restroom breaks: Don't operate in a deserted location. If you have no restroom in your truck, as a responsible business owner, you must have an available restroom location for your staff. Placing mirrors at openings helps you see out before exiting the truck.
10. An Emergency Plan: A regular fire drill is important but a handbook outlines emergency situations and what to do. Get one in place and train your self and your staff about situations that could happen. A customer choking on your food is an emergency, and you will have to act. Being inside a food truck doesn't mean you don't have to handle an emergency outside your window. Get First Aid and CPR under your belt.