In venues serving food, staff that are required to carry food over stairways are put at risk of slips, falls, burns and serious injury. However, the use of a service lift – more commonly known as a ‘dumbwaiter’ – can prevent this “unreasonable” risk, reckons Craig Stevenson, branch manager of Stannah in Scotland, who told SLTN it offers other benefits to business too.
“A service lift, like the Stannah Microlift, simply reduces the amount of travel on the stairway and improves customer service by speeding up delivery of hot food and speeding the clearing process,” he said.
“The lift becomes an extra pair of hands on every level.”
While for some the building their venue is housed within may dictate the type of lift that can be installed, a lift supplier can assess the space and advise accordingly.
Stevenson of Stannah reckons the amount of covers and the location of a venue’s kitchen are “key considerations” for the size and number of service lifts installed.
“For example, [for] a large restaurant over two floors with a kitchen in the basement or on the upper floor, we’d recommend two,” he said.
“Dumbwaiters used for food and drinks service are often installed in pairs – one for service and one for clearing. A double decker – two service lifts in one shaft – is an alternative option.”
In terms of investment, service lifts are built to last, said Stevenson; Stannah’s longest serving service lift, which remains in operation today, is said to be 39 years old.