Bartending can be a fun job. You may find that mixing drinks and interacting with customers is enjoyable – at least most of the time. However, being a bartender is also dangerous. Just because you do not work for a road crew or at a construction site does not mean you are safe from workplace injuries.
As a bartender, you face hazardous working conditions, including the following:
- Broken glass
- Repetitive and strenuous motions
- Slippery floors
Dealing with these hazards on a regular basis can take a toll on your safety and health. Here are some common ways you can get injured while bartending.
Cuts and lacerations
You may need to slice lemons or limes to create certain cocktails. Using these tools may eventually lead to getting a cut or other type of wound. Additionally, you may encounter broken glass and need to clean it up, which can easily cause lacerations.
Repetitive stress injuries
Bartending requires you to make a lot of repetitive motions, such as stirring drinks, bending over to grab bottles and twisting to serve customers. While none of these motions may sound harmful, they can cause damage to your body over time. These repetitive motions can result in carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis and back pain.
Sometimes, using an open flame or infused syrups is necessary to make specific drinks. This puts you at risk of hot water, boiling sugar spills and ignition of alcohol spills.
Slip, trip and fall injuries
The floors behind and around the bar can be full of spilled drinks, melting ice, boxes and other debris. You may slip or trip while working and get hurt. Common injuries from this type of accident include sprains, strains, fractures and head injuries.
Bartending may not seem dangerous at first, but injuries are unfortunately common. To make matters worse, only 14.4 percent of bartenders have health insurance through their employer.