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How to Protect Your Restaurant this Winter
Is your restaurant business prepared for the harsh winter weather expected this year? If not adequately prepared, your business can not only put your employees and patrons in danger, but you may also lose a significant amount of money. With the proper preparations, your restaurant can survive and thrive this winter and every winter long into the future. At Restaurant Programs of America (RPA) we are in the business of making sure that our clients are best prepared for whatever life throws their way. Here are the top items your business should take care of to get your business ready for winter.
Do not wait until the first snow fall or ice storm to find someone to plow your parking lot and shovel your walkways. It is absolutely vital that you have someone who can be ready to remove ice and snow from your establishment in a moment’s notice. This person should ensure all ice is removed and that all walkways are properly salted before and during business hours. During the winter, an employee or patron slipping and falling on your property can easily result in a lawsuit. Protect your business by taking precautions against the dangerous icy conditions.
Prevent Slips and Falls
Did you know that worker’s compensation claims skyrocket in the winter months? This is often because of the large amounts of water and ice that are tracked into restaurants during the winter, leading to slips that can result in serious injuries. As your first precaution, make sure that all puddles are being regularly mopped and that proper signage is put up warning patrons and employees that the floor is wet. Require employees to wear non-slip shoes, and hold meetings with employees about staying safe in the winter. Even if worker’s compensation insurance is not required in your state, you may want to consider a policy for your employees to protect them and your business.
Have a Plan for Power Outages
In most places around the United States, a power outage is not a rare event during a winter storm. Your restaurant establishment should have a clear plan laid out in the event that there is a power outage. For example, does your restaurant have a backup generator, and if so, does it need to be manually turned on? How long can the power stay out before you have to deal with food spoiling? What emergency protocol is in place to safely continue business or evacuate the establishment in the event of a power outage? These are all important questions that should be a part of your plan.
Secure the Proper Insurance Policies
The winter season is when most restaurant owners begin to wish they had invested in extra insurance coverage. Restaurant insurance needs will differ for everyone, especially depending on geographic location. A dining establishment in Southern California will not need the same insurance coverage as a restaurant in the heart of the Northeast. This is why it is so vital for those in the restaurant business to work with insurance professionals with experience and focus in restaurant insurance. Otherwise, you may end up with a one-size-fits-all policy that will not provide the specific coverages you need.
If you live in a region that experiences particularly harsh winters, then you should learn more about the following protections available through RPA.
- Business Interruption Insurance: Business Interruption Insurance protects your restaurant in the event of a natural disaster, such as a big flood or traumatic snow storm, that requires you to close your business temporarily. This policy will make sure you can still meet your financial obligations (such as rent and other bills) to avoid permanently closing your doors due to a natural disaster.
- General Liability Insurance: What happens if a patron of your restaurant slips and falls because the floor of your establishment is wet? Unfortunately, they can sue and cost your business tens of thousands of dollars in court fees alone. With general liability insurance, your business has legal protection against a wide array of potential lawsuits your business may be hit with at any given time.
- Property Insurance: Another policy to consider is Property Insurance. Property insurance protects your property against several different types of damage, including damage incurred from a natural disaster or extreme weather event.
Contact RPA Today for Your Restaurant Insurance Plans
Prepare your restaurant for the winter to protect your investment and livelihood. The restaurant insurance experts at RPA are prepared to help you select the right, cost-effective coverages. With agents in all 50 states, RPA can consult you on protecting your restaurant business this winter. Request a quote today!