Covid-19: restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaways (from 4th July 2020)

Restaurants, bars, pubs and takeaway establishments can resume trading from 4th July if suitable, covid-secure control measures are in place. We have summarised the government guidance below.

The following is a summary of the Government's covid-secure guidance for Restaurants, Pubs, Bars and Takeaways. Please refer to the full guidance when considering your risk assessment and the controls you will need to put in place.

Think about risk.

COVID-19 is a public health emergency. Everyone needs to assess and manage the risks of COVID-19, and in particular businesses should consider the risks to their workers and customers. This means you need to think about the risks they face and do everything reasonably practicable to minimise them, recognising you cannot completely eliminate the risk of COVID-19.

The Health and Safety Executive has guidance for business on how to manage risk and risk assessment at work along with specific advice to help control the risk of coronavirus in workplaces.

In the context of COVID-19 this means working through these steps in order:

  1. Ensuring both workers and customers who feel unwell stay at home and do not attend the venue.
  2. Increasing the frequency of handwashing and surface cleaning in every workplace.
  3. Businesses and workplaces should make every reasonable effort to enable working from home as a first option. Where working from home is not possible, workplaces should make every reasonable effort to comply with the social distancing guidelines set out by the government (2m, or 1m with risk mitigation where 2m is not viable, and set out the mitigations you will introduce in your risk assessments).
  4. Further mitigating actions include:
    – further increasing the frequency of hand washing and surface cleaning
    – keeping the activity time involved as short as possible
    – using screens or barriers to separate people from each other
    – using back-to-back or side-to-side working (rather than face-to-face) whenever possible
    – reducing the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’ (so each person works with only a few others)
  5. Where the social distancing guidelines cannot be followed in full, in relation to a particular activity, businesses should consider whether that activity needs to continue for the business to operate.
  6. Finally, if people must work face-to-face for a sustained period with more than a small group of fixed partners, then you will need to assess whether the activity can safely go ahead. No one is obliged to work in an unsafe work environment.

In your assessment you should have particular regard to whether the people doing the work are especially vulnerable to COVID-19 and the results of your risk assessment should be shared with your staff.

Keeping Customers Safe

  1. Calculate the maximum number of customers inside the premises that can reasonably follow social distancing guidelines
  2. Keep a temporary record of your customers and visitors to help NHS Test and Trace manage any local infections. Keep a record of staff shifts and the name and telephone number of each visitor, or group leader, together with the date, arrival time and, where possible, departure time. Keep these records securely for 21 days and do not use it for any other purpose (such as marketing) without the person's permission.
  3. Arrange indoor and outdoor seating and tables to maintain social distancing guidelines
  4. Provide clear guidance on social distancing and hygiene on arrival along with expected customer behavior to keep everyone safe
  5. Manage entry and exit of customers, and the number of customers at a venue should be managed, so that all indoor customers are seated with appropriate distancing, for example, through reservation systems, social distancing markings.
  6. Arrange for queue management procedures to be put together and implemented
  7. Make customers aware of, and encouraging compliance with, limits on gatherings.
  8. Encourage customers to use hand sanitiser or handwashing facilities as they enter the venue.
  9. Look at how people move through the venue and how you could adjust this to reduce congestion and contact between customers, for example, one-way flow, where possible.

Managing service of food and drink at a venue

In order to ensure staff and customers can order food and drink safely you should:

  1. Maintain social distancing between employees from customers when taking and receiving orders.
  2. Encourage use of contactless ordering from tables where available. For example, through an ordering app
  3. Use social distance markings to remind customers to maintain social distancing between customers and employees
  4. Minimise customer self-service of food, cutlery and condiments to reduce risk of transmission.
  5. Reduce the number of surfaces touched by both staff and customers.
  6. Encourage contactless payments where possible
  7. Minimise contact between front of house workers and customers at points of service using screens or tables at tills and counters to maintain social distancing guidelines
  8. Ensure all areas have sufficient ventilation.
  9. Encouraging use of outdoor areas for service where possible.
  10. Indoor table service must be used where possible, alongside further measures such as assigning a single staff member per table or small group of tables. Where bar or counter service is unavoidable, preventing customers from remaining at the bar or counter after ordering.
  11. Prevent customers from congregating at points of service. For example, having only staff collect and return empty glasses to the bar.
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Live Performances

At present venues should not permit live performances, including drama, comedy and music to take place in front of a live audience. All venues are required to take steps to avoid people needing to unduly raise their voices to each other which includes but is not limited to refraining from playing music or broadcasts that may encourage shouting, including if played at a volume that makes normal conversation difficult, loud background music, communal dancing, group singing or chanting.

Customer toilets

Toilets should be kept open and to you should ensure & promote good hygiene, social distancing, and cleanliness in toilet facilities.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Using signs and posters to encourage good handwashing techniques, the need to increase handwashing frequency and to avoid touching your face, and to cough or sneeze into a tissue which is binned safely, or into your arm if a tissue is not available.
  2. Adoption of a limited entry approach, with 1 in, 1 out system.
  3. Hand sanitiser should be available on entry to toilets and you should ensure suitable handwashing and drying facilities including running water and liquid soap and paper towels are available.
  4. Increased frequency of cleaning in line with usage.
  5. Keep the facilities well ventilated, for example by fixing doors open.
  6. Putting up a visible cleaning schedule can keep it up to date and visible.
  7. Providing more waste facilities and more frequent rubbish collection.

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