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Sewage Backup in Foodservice

Steritech’s free Public Health Information Brief gives you step-by-step guidelines on what food safety and operational steps you should take in your restaurant, store, or foodservice operation in the event of a sewage backup.

Download Steritech - Response & recovery after a sewage backup in foodservice brief

The danger of sewage backups in foodservice

A foodservice facility depends upon utility services such as a properly operating sewage system. A sewage backup is the overflow of sewage from equipment or plumbing facilities within a foodservice establishment. If a foodservice operation has a sewage backup, an imminent health hazard (a significant threat or danger to health that requires immediate correction) may exist. It creates a crisis situation that requires immediate actions, and sometimes, ceasing of operations to prevent danger to health of employees and customers.

Sewage backup in foodservice

Why is a sewage backup a food safety issue?

Sewage water contaminants may include not only foodborne pathogens such as E. coli, norovirus, hepatitis A, Shigella, etc. but also parasites such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium, chemicals and toxins. These contaminants can get into food or onto employees and customers and cause illnesses.

What constitutes a sewage backup?

Your establishment has sewage backup if there is any one or more of these conditions:

  • standing water/sewage is in drains;
  • restrooms have toilets that do not flush or have sewage overflowing;
  • waste water from dish machine or sinks is not draining or is spilling onto floors;
  • the grease trap is not functioning or
  • employees are walking in sewage/over flowing water and tracking throughout the establishment.  

Steritech's Response & recovery after a sewage backup in foodservice brief is intended to assist with the development of procedures to address a sewage backup in a foodservice operation. It is important that the manager or person-in-charge ensures that if these temporary procedures are needed, they are strictly followed and all operations operate in compliance with food safety requirements.

Download our Response & recovery after a sewage backup in foodservice brief here.

 


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