Refrigerators, at home or work, need to be taken care of. In the workplace, refrigerator safety may be overlooked unless guidelines are established and posted.
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Refrigerators need to be checked for electrical safety. The plug should match the outlet capacity. Do not use an extension cord or a bypass plug that allows a three-prong plug to be used in an ungrounded outlet. Check the cord condition at least twice a year. Maintain the appliance according to the manufacturer's guidelines.
Use an appliance thermometer to make sure the temperature for the fridge section is no higher than 5 degrees Celsius and the freezer remains at 0 degrees or below.
Assign the weekly task of cleaning to someone. The chore can be rotated, but a log should be posted with the date and signature of the cleaner. Use disinfectant cleaners and paper towels -- not cloths or sponges, which can harbour bacteria.
Require employees to label food put into the fridge with their name and date. Toss food that is more than 3 days old. Require raw meats, poultry and seafood to be kept in sealed containers.
According to the University of Minnesota Extension, the United States has approximately 76 million food poisoning cases each year. Use the food safety chart linked in the References section to determine the amount of time that food can safely be stored.
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