Interior of hotel kitchen

Hotel Fire Prevention: The Unique Difficulties Of Hotel Kitchen Exhaust System Cleaning

Hotel kitchen exhaust systems are complicated to clean, especially with the added fire risks and hundreds of people staying right above the kitchen. The kitchens are often huge, the exhaust systems are long and complicated, and there are even more fire prevention rules. You shouldn’t let that scare you off, but it is important to know the specific difficult details so you know what to look out for.

Why Do Hotels Have A Higher Fire Risk?

Hotel kitchens are huge and complicated, with ducts going every which way and strung throughout the hotel. Because the ducts run through so much of the building, if a fire starts there is a much bigger threat of the entire building getting caught up in the blaze and more people getting injured.

In addition to the length of the ducts, the ducts of hotel kitchens can be more complicated, meaning that it is easier to miss various duct points, thereby letting a buildup of grease occur.

Why Does The Age Of My Hotel Matter?

Hotel duct work is already complicated enough as it is, and one of the factors that makes the ductwork even more complex is the age of the building itself. Often, the older that a hotel is, the more complicated it is. By checking to see when your kitchen ductwork was installed and when/if it was renovated, you can get a rough idea of what to expect.

Knowing the age of your hotel kitchen is also key when finding a cleaning company; you want to hire a company that is familiar with older ductwork.

In older hotels the ductwork tends to especially go every which way. Because of this, it’s very important that the cleaning crew can map out where the ducts are in order to gain access and properly clean them.

For all hotels, it is very important that you provide the schematics for the system. If you have a very old hotel and do not have the schematics/accurate schematics, than it is absolutely imperative that the cleaning crew you hire is able to analyze the system.

Your cleaning crew will have specific methods that they prefer to use to analyze your hotel, so make sure that you discuss the plan of action thoroughly with the cleaning company.

Who Organizes and Manages The Kitchen Cleaning?

Hotel kitchens aren’t like restaurant kitchens. Hotels run like a tightly run ship, with a lot of different people doing different managing jobs within the hotel as opposed to a single restaurant owner managing everything. Because each hotel will have a slightly different managing system, it’s important to figure out who in your hotel will be in charge of scheduling and managing the exhaust system cleaning, and then letting the cleaning company know who they should turn to first when figuring out certain details.

Because of the various things the cleaning company will need to know, the first few cleaning appointments might involve a fair number of people: people who have hotel blueprints, the cooks, engineers.

After the cleaning company and hotel staff gets into the swing of things, the managing will most likely drop down to one person. Often, this person is either the Executive Chef, F&B Director, Director of Engineering, or Director of Facilities.

What To Always Keep In Mind

A hotel will always have people in it – there is no evacuation so the ducts can be cleaned. With guests sleeping upstairs, it is so, so, so important to hire a trustworthy, capable cleaning crew and do all the prep necessary to prevent even the chance of a fire. In addition to making sure that the crew you hire is the best that you can get, it is also extremely important to make sure that you are cleaning the ducts as often as it is recommended.

Hotel kitchens are being used around the clock, 247, and the only thing worse that a hotel kitchen fire at 1 p.m. is a hotel kitchen fire at 1 a.m., when everyone is asleep. Make sure that grease fires don’t stand a chance in your hotel.

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