It's the beginning of August, which means that summer is windingdown for some, but in many parts of the United States, summer andwarm weather continue well into October.

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It's especially true for many restaurant owners that try to extend the seasonwith outdoor patios and heaters.

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Summer conditions have an impact on customer experience andtraffic, and they also have a significant impact on workers'compensation claims and costs. For many restaurants, in addition toexperienced staff, they hire seasonal workers who may not have thesame experience as year-round employees

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By the numbers

According to the National Restaurant Association, there are more than 1 millionrestaurants in the U.S. with 14.7 million employees. That numberrepresents 10% of the U.S. workforce. Based on Farmers Insurance claims data, here are some restaurantindustry statistics:

  • 25% of annual workers' comp claims are by restaurants.
  • 26% of restaurant workers' comp claims are filed in the summermonths.
  • 27% of restaurant claims filed during the summer months arecut, puncture and scrape claims.

Related: How medical marijuana complicates workplace policies foremployers

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Cutting technique

To help restaurant owners keep employees safe and mitigaterisks, Farmers Insurance provides these tips:

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Ensure that all cutting boards are slipfree. This may mean a secured cutting board or using some type ofnon-slip pad beneath it.

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Ensure that all employees who will beusing knives have been properly trained to cut or chop food. Ifemployees are involved in cutting or chopping, they should know tokeep their fingers tucked on the hand holding the food.

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Check that the knives are well known orproperly labeled for the correctly intended job. The knife shouldfit the food.

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Related: New workers' compensation strategies needed inFlorida

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Rosalie Donlon

Rosalie Donlon is the editor in chief of ALM's insurance and tax publications, including NU Property & Casualty magazine and NU PropertyCasualty360.com. You can contact her at [email protected].