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What does a server do?

The duties of servers, table wait staff, hostesses, bus-boys, and other food and hospitality personnel vary according to the workplace. The following is a general summary of duties these people have in common:

  • Greet customers.
  • Take orders and relay them to kitchen and bar staff.
  • Pay attention to customers' special menu and dietary needs or restrictions, when applicable.
  • Serve food or drinks to customers.
  • Clean up tables or kitchen.

What are some health and safety issues of servers?

Work environments such as restaurants, hotels and bars, where food and beverages are served, present a unique set of hazards.

The main health and safety issues for servers include:


What are some preventive measures for a server?

  • Learn safe lifting techniques.
  • Wash your hands before eating, drinking or smoking, or after going to the toilet, and at the beginning and end of the day. If you come in contact with raw food such as meat or poultry, wash your hands before touching anything else.
  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment and apparel for the task.
  • Wear shoes with non-skid soles.

What are some good general safe work practices?


Where can I get more information?

General information is available in OSH Answers or through the CCOHS person-to-person Inquiries Service.

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Document last updated on July 2, 2004

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