With the current climate amid us all, things have inevitably changed in our environment and so have people. We have become more hygienically pronounced, safer, and secure when it comes to food consumptions and storage and have an overall sense of personal health and work safety.
When the quarantine restrictions were introduced earlier this year, along with it came the unfortunate shutting down of many stores, restaurants, parks, and many more facilities that were once open and thriving and the choice of our weekend get-away. Many restrictions were implemented and with it came many closed doors and businesses staying closed for a matter of months.
Once businesses such as restaurants and hospitality closed their doors, all the food and drinks that were stored in their backrooms were also closed off with it, not to mention the hassle of making sure these do not go bad or go to waste was entirely a new thing. This may have led to pests gaining the freedom to build their homes in these storage rooms where there is no one to get rid of them and the health hazards of things such as vermin or common household pests would have been inevitable.
There is an array of diseases that pests can carry with them that we don’t normally pay heed to when we see them and having them in a public restaurant or kitchen is not only against the health and safety legislation but is also a major health hazard to employees and customers alike. Restaurants can get fine up to thousands of dollars if found not abiding by the official legal requirements of the health and safety work act, which can be found on , for further information.
Let’s look at some of the negative implications that take place when pests are around any environment.
What Negative Effects Can Be Found When Pests Are Around
As mentioned earlier, these types of vermin include anything from rats, cockroaches, flies, and even mosquitoes, can all carry various diseases and viruses that can affect people that are bitten or eat the food contaminated by them in any way either by their faecal matter or any other particles they may be carrying on their bodies including shedding their skin.
These things can be airborne and cause various diseases such as E. coli and Salmonella, especially from cockroaches. Likewise, insects and rodents can carry other things such as Lyme disease, malaria, dengue fever, Zika virus, and creatures such as bats can carry hantavirus, the plague, and several other harmful and contagious viruses and diseases that can even cause death, if not treated immediately.
According to the department of health, there are three common pests that one needs to be very careful of. These are the cockroach, Flies, and Fleas, or Mosquitoes. Both flying and crawling insects can be detrimental to the people around it if not taken care of and eradicated immediately. Even something as simple as a housefly can be dangerous
Other pests that can also cause an immense amount of harm and damage not only to the goods and products that are stored in any environment but also to people include both big and small, rats, mice, bed bugs, and fruit flies.
What Can Happen When You Are Infected?
Depending on the type of creature that contaminates the items, you would be affected accordingly. Let’s look at a few things that can happen if you get infected by rats or mice, for instance.
- If you get bitten by a rat, you get what is called rat-bite fever, and it can cause a bacterial illness in your body.
- Something as serious as Hantavirus can often lead to a fatal respiratory disease.
- Another thing it can cause, either being bitten or eating food polluted by them, is the Plague, which is contagious because it is a bacterial disease, symptoms of which are delirium and fever.
- The common one being Salmonella is also a bacterial infection that affects the intestine and this can happen due to food poisoning.
If you were bitten by a mosquito you are at risk of getting other serious conditions such as West Nile, which is a virus characterized by flu-like symptoms, or perhaps you can even get Dengue fever which is coupled with joint pains.
As you can see its no joke having pests around when you do not control them.
What Can You Do to Prevent This from Happening to You?
As the restrictions are lifting slowly, business owners are starting to find solutions to eradicate what may have been damaged by these vermin mentioned above and look for ways to make sure this does not happen to them again in the event they may need to store their produce somewhere.
One thing they can do is get rid of all their damaged goods, which can cost them a huge amount of financial burdens, plus waste as well, because infected goods cannot be recycled and will need to be thrown away responsibly, away from the population.
The other thing to do is to do a thorough cleaning of the restaurant, get rid of any expired or damaged goods or raw materials, and then hire the services of a to do the rest for you. This will become the norm for a lot of hospitality and retail businesses, so one should start now to implement these procedures into their facilities every couple of years to make sure nothing gets infected, contaminated, or goes to waste. It may have never crossed your mind before, but now it is starting to become one of the things that need to be added to any business person‘s priority list.
The aspect to keep in mind about this is, you don’t necessarily need to have a business that handles food items, but rather anything that will provide a home for these creatures will be susceptible to this, especially when left unattended for a long period of time. One must always choose the safety of their business first over any additional expenses necessary to eradicate any health and safety risk.