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Mission possible – Swiftclean abseils into luxury hotel to complete kitchen extract cleaning

By February 7, 2013News

A luxury London hotel’s commitment to ensuring that the extract systems serving its kitchens are kept completely clean necessitated specialist rope technicians from Swiftclean Environmental, one of the UK’s longest established providers of duct cleaning services, having to abseil down the inside of a tall brick extract riser.

Situated on prestigious Jermyn Street, in the heart of London’s Mayfair, the Cavendish Hotel offers both luxury and convenience for visitors to the capital, part of which is the food served in the Hotel’s AA-Rosette restaurant Petrichor. All kitchen grease extract systems, whether in a luxury hotel like The Cavendish London or a fast food outlet, must be cleaned regularly in accordance with buildings insurance policies, Fire Safety Regulations and Workplace (Health, Safety & Welfare) regulations.

With hot oil and naked flames prevalent in every commercial kitchen, concealed grease deposits can be a major fire risk. In any commercial kitchen grease and dirt will become deposited within canopies, extractor fans and ventilation ducts. The build-up of grease and other residue within the kitchen extract system can lead to ignition and potentially a large, destructive fire.

A failure to conduct regular cleaning of a kitchen extract and ventilation system, as determined by an appropriate risk assessment, can leave the building owner open to prosecution for non-compliance with fire and environmental health regulations and could invalidate insurance cover.

“The Cavendish London has a very long large brick extract riser that needs to be cleaned on a regular basis,” explains the hotel’s facilities manager Nick Chapman. “Together with Swiftclean, we looked at the options open to us and decided that the best way to approach this would be to abseil the riser using a rope technician and then clean the kitchen ductwork leading to the riser.”

“This work is highly specialised” adds Swiftclean managing director Gary Nicholls. “Our team also had to work within specific time constraints in order to ensure that the work was completed in time for the kitchen to be ready for operation. Not every system requires this, but it just shows the lengths we sometimes have to go to.”

As a result, in addition to the kitchen ductwork, Swiftclean has also been given a contract for the inline cleaning of the riser every six months.

The Oct 2005 Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order, which came into effect in April 2006, places the onus on building operators to appoint a responsible person for fire safety and this responsible person needs to have a fire risk assessment carried out. Such a risk assessment should include any kitchen extract system within or passing through a building and should identify fire risks and ways of removing or reducing the risks. Failure to carry out a risk assessment and precautionary actions identified as risk reduction measures could, in the event of injury or death, lead to an HSE prosecution of the individual and company responsible.

In addition to ensuring compliance and protecting the hotel against the threat of a kitchen extract fire, The Cavendish London has also protected itself from any adverse publicity and brand damage that would inevitably accompany such an incident.

For more information on how Swiftclean can help your Organisation achive its business and legal obligations please contact us: Freephone 0800 243 471.