iriemade Skip to Content

Wedding Catering Accidents and How to Prevent Them

Photo by Lina Kivaka

Kitchen accidents are some of the most common for restaurant owners and caterers, and many of them could be prevented. From stoves to refrigerators and everything in between, a little preventive maintenance and care can help keep your commercial kitchen accident-free.

This informative blog post lists common wedding catering accidents, how they happen, and how to prevent them.


Getting cut or nicked is a common kitchen hazard, one that can be prevented with a few simple steps. For one, make sure your kitchen knives are always kept as sharp as possible. Yes, you read that right. The sharper the knife, the easier it is to cut and slice, which means you can apply less pressure. All this adds up to a reduced chance of a knife accident.

Broken glass is another kitchen risk to consider. If there’s broken glass on the floor, sweep it up the best you can. Chances are you missed a piece or two, so turn the light off and shine a flashlight into the kitchen. You should be able to see the remaining bits of glass glittering in the dark, enabling you to get every last bit.

Slips and Falls

Falling in spilled cooking oils, drinks, sauces, or tripping over obstacles can be hazardous in the kitchen. Spills make the floor slippery, upping the odds of slipping and falling or staining valuable items. Some best practices include cleaning up spills as they happen, never placing a wet floor sign directly in your walking path, and keeping your shoes dry by placing a mat near the bath area.

Caterers and support staff should also be careful during wedding receptions. It’s easy to trip on cords, knock over decorations, or even slip on residue from wedding bubbles as you’re carrying food to the designated area. Walk cautiously and have someone guide you to avoid these hazards.

Stains and Odors

While it ranks low on the list of dangers, getting stains on clothes and other items is a quick way to ruin your day. The same goes for smelling like yesterday’s dinner because your coat was hanging up in the kitchen.

When cooking, always wear an apron and swap nice footwear for slip-on “kitchen shoes.” Play it smart and keep designer tote bags and other valuable items out of the kitchen at all times. That way, your nice things don’t end up coated in greasy film or embedded with kitchen odors.

Make sure your oven fan works and the filter is fresh. Use it after every cooking session. Doing so helps cut down on kitchen odors. Make a point to open the windows to air out the kitchen. Lastly, routinely clean the sink drain with vinegar and baking soda and take the trash outside regularly.

Burns and Fires

Burning yourself is the most common injury caterers face. It can happen while removing food from the microwave, while a dish is still hot in the oven, or as you carry out the cake with sparklers for wedding celebrations. Always use oven mitts when handling hot pans and dishes, and use the proper tools like messy spatulas, not forks, to remove items from the microwave or oven. 

You should also keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen at all times and learn how to safely put out grease fires. Lastly, caterers should be careful when lighting candles, sparklers, or other items during the festivities.

Contact with Chilies

Many people love chilies because of the rich, spicy flavor they add to dishes, but not everyone is aware of their danger. The outer membrane of chili pepper contains capsaicin, an essential oil that can cause extreme distress in humans if it comes into contact with sensitive skin or eyes or even just the air.

Wear kitchen gloves when touching chilies, and avoid touching your eyes until you have washed your hands. Wash your hands thoroughly after handling chilies of any kind, marinate with lemon juice, then rinse off with cold water.

Appliance Tip-Overs

Appliances that fall over and off their stands or bases—like microwaves, toaster ovens, stand mixers, and blenders—are some of the most common causes of kitchen injuries.

All kitchen appliances, including refrigerators and washing machines, should be anchored to the wall or floor with anti-tip brackets.

Prevent a tip-over with this simple solution: tall or unsteady appliances should be anchored, strapped, or wedged to prevent them from falling. Two standard anchor devices are flexible straps and screw-in wedges.

One end of the appliance is secured to a wall stud or other secure point behind the unit with straps. When attaching an appliance that has wedges, the bottom edge of the machine is pushed back against an adjacent wall and screwed into the floor.


Accidents happen, even for professional caterers. But if you learn the most common ways people get hurt in the kitchen, perhaps you’ll be more careful and avoid them. The safety precautions above are essential for preventing accidents, whether you’re catering a small intimate wedding or an extravagant reception.

Pin It on Pinterest