Restaurant New Guidelines For Miami Dade..



Dining establishments in Miami-Dade must follow these protocols to ensure a responsible opening and prioritizes the health, safety, and well-being of both patrons and staff. It applies to any legally established indoor and/or outdoor dining use. It shall remain the responsibility of the restaurants to comply with all applicable laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Recommendations are in conformance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization, and the Florida Department of Health guidelines. Revisions may be recommended when advisable based on future health indicators.


Facility Preparation


 Before re-opening, plumbing must be flushed to eliminate stagnant water from the period of closure (see CDC guidelines:



Must change and/or upgrade restaurant HVAC filters as necessary to maximize fresh air (using the maximum filtration for the design of the ventilation system) and increase

outdoor airflow rates where possible. Filters should be changed regularly.

o Install high-efficiency air filters and HVAC systems. *

o In addition to HEPA filtration, install Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) in

small common areas that cannot be adequately ventilated. *

*The CDC recommendations for both of these measures are available at


Must develop and implement plans as appropriate to address any parking garage or other facility access points leading to restaurant entrances (e.g., limiting capacity in elevators.

sanitizing elevator touchpoints; cleaning stairway handrails; frequent cleaning or

suspending the use of parking payment machines and alternatives for valet parking

arrangements (valet must be avoided in the first phase*); etc.). These plans must be

available for review and inspection.

*Where parking is available, guests who arrive in their own cars will self-park. Valet will not be an option

where onsite parking is available. Where parking is unavailable, valet may be utilized. Valet operator will

step away 6 feet after opening car door (visual markers should be placed on the ground to assist). After

parking, vehicle operator will switch or sanitize gloves prior to servicing the next vehicle.


Must have self-dispensing hand sanitizer or handwashing station at the entrance to the


 Trash bins with lids that open without the need to touch the lids must be placed and

available for use to staff and guests in all entrance areas.

Must put in place a disposal plan for safe handling and dispensing of used PPEs in

restaurants and relevant exterior areas (e.g. use designated solid waste bags that are

double-bagged and securely sealed).


 Health & safety signage/visual aids with messaging similar to that appended to this

document must be posted for customers and staff with easy visibility to all intended

audiences. Signage should promote hand hygiene and physical distancing and request

customers not to enter the restaurant if they are unwell or have COVID-19 symptoms.

Translate into all relevant languages.

 All restaurants must create visible floor markings for appropriate 6-foot distancing for

each party in any waiting areas, whether exterior or interior.

 Distinct areas must be created for customer waiting, order pickup/take out and any thirdparty delivery services.

Must Introduce plexiglass barriers at tills and counters as an additional level of protection

for staff.

 All playgrounds must remain closed until Emergency Orders are lifted.


Operational Preparations


Supervisory Procedures

A team consisting of the heads of each restaurant’s internal operational units must be convened to evaluate the health status of restaurant staff prior to opening for business and on an ongoing basis as described below:

 Records must be kept documenting:

o Any unusual rise in worker absenteeism, especially those related to respiratory


o Numbers of staff that test positive for the virus and follow an established protocol*

for managing the consequences resulting from each positive individual.

o This documentation must include Closing Procedures in Case of Exposure.

Restaurants must have ready procedures to quickly mobilize to shut down the

restaurant, notify all staff and execute deep cleaning protocols per CDC


o Lessons learned each day and corrective actions and policies implemented.

 The team will maintain:

o Communication with managers of different units within the restaurant (Cooking

staff, waiters, busboys, hosts, and if relevant, valet service members (valet service

should be avoided for the first phase).

o Contact information on staff, including emergency telephone numbers (ideally cell

phone numbers) and e-mail addresses.

o Physical or Electronic Logbook of actions, measures, and improvements


o Physical or Electronic Logbook of training of staff including date of training, type of

training noting the amount of time of training, and continuing training.

 An individual must be assigned each shift to monitor and supervise the food,

equipment, procedures, and management of the health and safety measures for

restaurant guests and staff. Cleaning Task Checklists must be created and used daily

to ensure enhanced cleaning and sanitizing procedures are uniformly followed by

each shift. An individual must be specifically assigned within the kitchen to monitor

incidents of close contact as defined in the below under “Employee Social Distancing.”

 Regular announcements should be made reminding employees and customers to

follow physical distancing and to wash their hands.

 Restaurants electing to avail themselves of outdoor dining allowances must consider

the impact of inclement weather in the formulation of their operational plans and on

the maintenance of social distances during rain events.

 Self-audits or third-party audits are recommended and adapted to focus on enhanced

COVID-19 procedures.

*If a COVID-19 case for a visitor or a staff member is reported, the establishment must strictly follow Florida

Department of Health ( ) and CDC guidelines for notification and

for cleaning and sanitizing (

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Capacity Limitations

Physical distancing is critical to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing protocols

must be observed by patrons and staff, as outlined below.

  • Any indoor restaurant operation must be limited by the Governor’s Executive Order

but no more than 50% of its building occupancy with the maintenance of social

distancing of 6 feet between parties*. Any outdoor seating must maintain similar

distancing but in no event may the combined indoor and outdoor operation exceed

100% of its legally permitted building occupancy. All bar counters must remain closed

to seating.

*To estimate the occupancy of a space, divide the square footage of the room by the square footage

required per person (or per group of guests who live in the same household).

  • A per table party limit of 4 persons must be maintained whether seating is indoor or

outdoors unless the members of the party are from the same household. When parties

are from the same household, tables may seat up to 6 persons. Restaurants must also

make reasonable accommodations to party sizes to accommodate guests with

disabilities such as allowing additional seating for health care aides. Whenever possible,

it is recommended to have a maximum of 4 persons for 100 square feet (10 squares


  • Tables must be arranged such that the distance from the back of one chair to the back of another chair shall be at least 6 feet apart and guests shall face each other from a distance of at least 3 feet (3 foot of internal table distance does not apply to parties

consisting of one household unit).* In order to facilitate compliance with these distancing

requirements, restaurants must establish a procedure to inquire from arriving parties

whether or not they consist of one household unit. It is recommended that seating

configurations be prearranged to ensure that parties reporting themselves as being from

different households are seated at tables accommodating the 3-foot internal distancing


*Importantly, being from the same family but living in different homes does require maintenance of the 3

foot internal table distancing within parties; 3 foot internal table distancing must be maintained for any

members of a party that do not live in the same household.


Employee Procedures

Use of a full-body disinfectant booth (example, CleanTech J-1) to sanitize all employees prior to

entry is recommended; however, a restaurant’s voluntary installation of a sanitation booth does

not negate the need for establishment of the below procedures.



Proprietors must ensure all restaurant staff have a clear understanding of how a business will

be operating with all necessary health & safety protocols.

 Staff working in restaurants must be provided with written instructions and training

on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 per existing Florida Department of

Health literature (see attached).

 Normal routine fitness to work procedures employed by food businesses as part

of their Food Safety Management Systems (FSMS) must ensure that infected

workers are excluded from food premises.

 Staff who are unwell or have symptoms of COVID-19 must not be at work and

must be informed about how to contact medical professionals. *

*This is imperative because if an infected worker handles food, it is possible that they could introduce the

virus to uncooked food they are working on, or onto surfaces within the food business, by coughing and

sneezing, or through hand contact. Also, in the case of COVID19, it is not uncommon that infected people

may be asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic and may not display any signs or symptoms of disease or may

present with mild symptoms that are easily overlooked. Some infected people, not yet displaying symptoms,

are contagious and capable of spreading SARS-CoV2 (the virus responsible for COVID19).

Health Screening Questions

The manager (or designee) must ask every employee the following health screening questions before each shift to help identify any symptoms of COVID-19*:

 Have you experienced

o a fever ≥ 99.5 °F (37.5°C), cough (any kind dry or productive), sore throat,

shortness of breath or breathing difficulties, fatigue, chills, muscle pain, headache,

or loss of taste or smell since your last shift?

 Have you come into contact with anyone who has at least two of the symptoms listed

above since your last shift?

 Have you come into contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 since

your last shift?

* Health screening questions can be administered on-line through a secure employee portal and sent

electronically to the restaurant prior to the employee arriving for work or via telephone.


Temperature Screening

Employees must take their temperature at home before coming to work and must not come to work if the thermometer reading reveals a temperature of ≥ 99.5 °F (37.5°C). They must report their temperature as being above or below this threshold upon arrival at work. Specific employee temperatures should not be kept by restaurants; rather, the information is to be recorded in a daily log as “Pass/Fail.”*

*It shall remain the responsibility of the restaurants to comply with all applicable laws, including HIPPA, when

engaging in screening procedures.


Alternatively, restaurants may elect to take employee temperatures prior to their entry into the

facility. Thermometers must be single use or touchless/infrared and should be kept in a cool

place and out of direct sunlight. Restaurants using infrared thermometers must take care to

carefully calibrate these thermometers according to the manufacturer’s recommended

calibration procedure and schedule. Temperature taking should be conducted in the shade and

when employees have rested (approximately 10-15 minutes) if they bike or walk to work.

Employees must not enter restaurants prior to the self-reporting of acceptable temperature

readings or the taking of their temperature by restaurants electing to take employee

temperatures. Temperature screening is required until the end of phase 1 and recommend

after phase 1.**

*It is recommended that each facility have reliable single-use thermometers available in case a patron or employee

becomes symptomatic while at the restaurant

**Keep in mind that not having a temperature does not exclude someone from being contagious. It shall remain

the responsibility of the restaurants to comply with all applicable laws, including HIPPA, when engaging in screening



Time Clock

If a time clock or other conventional record-keeping device is used, it must be cleaned with sanitizer after each employee use. The restaurant will provide a chlorine or alcohol wipe for the cleaning of these devices by each employee. Consider the use of an electronic wearable device for each employee that would automatically capture the time when an employee arrives and departs.


Handwashing and Need for Increased Frequency of Handwashing

Restaurants need to ensure that adequate sanitary facilities are provided and ensure that food workers thoroughly and frequently wash their hands. Employees must wash hands and change gloves (if applicable to workstation -see below) at least every 30 minutes and every time a team member changes tasks (including upon arrival at the restaurant before starting work).

Hand cleaning between tables is needed each time servers or staff come into physical contact with guests at the tables or with their food, drinks, dishware, silverware, napkins or other serving equipment. Hands must be washed before, after, and between deliveries to different tables (whether it be food or other table objects).

Restaurants must facilitate easy hand cleaning with soap and water between tables by servers and other staff. This can be done by either:

 Installation of permanent or portable touchless faucets, liquid soap dispenses, and paper towel dispensers with easy accessibility within dining areas is recommended (this is in addition to existing bathroom facilities).

 Alternatively, simple handwashing stations can be created throughout the restaurant and dining area through the use of commercially available wet towel bucket dispensers

(employing single use paper towels and water) in conjunction with automatic soap

dispensers. Wet cloth towels (with water) may also be used as an alternative to paper

towels (so long as they are employed as single use) (example: Kimtech Wettask system).

Handwashing stations must be accompanied by nearby touchless trash bins to dispose

of used paper or cloth towels.

All restaurants must employ some form of in-dining room handwashing station method that allows staff to wash their hands before and after coming into physical contact with table contents. Hand sanitizers can be used as an additional measure but should not replace handwashing.


Face Mask Requirement for all Employees and Third-Party Affiliates

All restaurant employees are considered to be food handlers for the purpose of this document and must wear masks. Food handlers are people who directly touch open food as part of their work, but it also includes staff who may touch food contact surfaces or other surfaces in rooms where open food is handled. The term can, therefore, apply not only to host, managers,

servers, bussers, and food runners but also to managers, cleaners, maintenance contractors, delivery workers, and food inspectors.



Glove use is to be reserved to employees involved in direct food preparations as defined by existing industry regulatory standards* (traditionally back of house staff) but also includes

bussers and foodrunners. In restaurants where servers or other staff also act as bussers or foodrunners, glove use should be replaced by handwashing after each physical encountered asdescribed above under “Handwashing”. Safe glove use includes:

Do NOT touch mouth, nose or eyes when wearing gloves.

 All gloves must be changed frequently, at least every 30 minutes or when changing tasks.

 Gloves must be changed after carrying out non-food related activities, such as

opening/closing doors by hand, and emptying bins.

 Hands must be washed between glove changes and when gloves are removed.

 Removal of disposable gloves can lead to contamination of hands. Safe glove removal

procedures may be found at


 Disposable gloves are not a substitute for handwashing.**

*Wearing disposable gloves can give a false sense of security and may result in staff not washing hands as

frequently as required. The COVID-19 virus can contaminate disposable gloves in the same way it gets onto

workers’ hands. Handwashing is a greater protective barrier to infection than wearing disposable gloves.

** KNOW that viruses and bacteria will build up on the surface of the hands even when you wear gloves, so

handwashing is critical when gloves are removed to avoid subsequent contamination of food.


Employee Social Distancing Measures

 Limit the number of staff in a food preparation area at any one time.

 Organize staff into working groups or teams to facilitate reduced interaction between


 Stagger workstations on either side of processing lines, so that food workers are not

facing one another.

 Space out workstations, which may require a reduction in the speed of production lines.

 Provide PPE such as face masks, hair nets, disposable gloves (in food preparation areas)

per existing industry regulations. Use of PPE is routine in high-risk areas of food premises

that produce ready-to-eat and cooked foods. When staff are dressed in PPE it is possible

to reduce the distance between workers from 6 feet to 3 feet. Any breach of the 3 foot

distance between workers must not exceed 15 consecutive minutes per incident. An

individual must be specifically assigned within the kitchen to monitor incidents of close


 Frequency of surface cleaning and sanitizing must be increased.

 The number of staff in break rooms must be limited and disinfected regularly.

It is recommended that front-of-house staff not enter back-of-house areas where possible.


General Hygiene

EPA guidance on effective use of disinfectants is available at

 Kitchen areas must have handwashing stations fully equipped with soap and selfdispensing

paper towels. Ideally the faucets operation is hands-free.

 Wash and frequently sanitize items such as ladles, tongs, and condiment holders.

 Keep internal doors open where possible to minimize contact.

 Washing of dishes, silverware, and table linen:

o All dishes, silverware, and glassware must be washed and disinfected in a

dishwashing machine, including items that have not been used, as they might have

been in contact with the hands of guests or staff.

o If for any reason manual washing is required, the usual steps must be followed

(wash, disinfect, rinse), taking the maximum level of precautions. Drying must be

carried out using disposable paper towels. Likewise, tablecloths and napkins

should be washed in the usual manner.

o Laundry: All table linen will be washed at high temperatures and per CDC


o Textiles, linens, and clothes should be put in special, marked laundry bags and

handled carefully to prevent raising dust, with consequent potential contamination

of surrounding surfaces or people

Employee Meals: Meals from home shall not be allowed in the kitchen.

Manager’s Office: Must be disinfected with every shift change, with particular attention

to high touchpoints (mouse, keyboard, etc.).


Customer Experience

Customers must wear masks at all times unless seated at a table.

Front door


Hands-free sanitizer must be available at the entrance. Front door must be operated using one or more of the following:

 Use electronic self-opening mechanism or employ a door person to open and close doors

for customers. Doors must be disinfected and wiped down doors every 30 minutes (selfopening doors do not require this frequency of wiping).

 Provide wipes/paper towels to customers at entrance and exit for individual use along

with trash receptacle. Trash must be disposed of regularly and must be contained in a

bin with a touchless lid that opens without the need to touch the lid. Doors must be

disinfected and wiped down every 30 minutes.


Host Stands must be operated as follows:

 Hand sanitizer must be available at the host stand.

 Host staff must maintain social distance from the customer as escorting to the table.

 Mints, toothpicks and other articles must not be provided as self-service. If individually

wrapped, they can be provided at the table.

 Where possible, parties must wait in vehicles for their tables. Host stand waiting areas

must contain visible floor markings as noted above for appropriate 6-foot distancing for

each party in any waiting areas, whether exterior or interior.


The Bar


Bar use for seating is presently prohibited by the Governor’s Order. Should bar use be allowed, it must be in accordance with the following:

 Any bar use must be treated as a table for in-house dining unless it is acting as a takeout area.

 Any bar seating must be socially distanced at 6 feet between parties.

 Bars must not be used as a waiting area. Absolutely no congregation will be

permitted at bars.




No self-service of any kind including drink fountains, buffets or salad bars shall be permitted for Phase 1 – opening.

Restaurant Staff

Any employees approaching tables must wear masks.

Gloves must be worn by bussers and food runners; as noted above, any other

staff not wearing gloves that places or removes food or objects from a table

while patrons are sitting at the table must wash their hands before, after and

between each physical encounter with a guest table (where the table or its

contents were physically touched).

 The server must maintain maximum social distance feasible while interacting with


 The number of staff approaching tables should be minimized.

 No self-service by customers.

Table Setting must conform to the following*:

 All menus must be disposable and single-use, or the menu can be provided on a web

page/QR code that the customer can be instructed to view on their personal device.

Signage should instruct the customers on the use of internet and web page.

 If silverware is not disposable, only roll-ups will be allowed. Employees providing

cutlery to patrons must wash hands before handling cutlery and placing at tables.

No open cutlery is permitted as a preset.

 No water/wine glasses are permitted as presets.

 No condiments or breadbaskets are permitted as presets (but may be made available

after the party is seated).

 All condiments must be single-use.

 Hand sanitizing wipes or another form of handwashing method must be provided at

each table

 Tables and chairs must be sanitized mechanically, using an EPA approved

disinfectant that is safe for the furniture, after each party’s use or, if not used, every 60


*The presentation or setting of single-service and single use articles and cleaned and sanitized utensils

shall be done in a manner designed to prevent the contamination of food and lip-contact surfaces. As per

FDA Food Code 4-904.13:

(A) Except as specified in (B) of this section, tableware that is preset shall be protected from

contamination by being wrapped, covered, or inverted

(B) Preset tableware may be exposed if:

  1. Unused settings are removed when a consumer in seated; or
  2. Settings not removed when a consumer is seated are cleaned and sanitized before further use.


Order Taking at Quick Service Restaurant Counter/Window

Contactless Procedures: Must minimize contact at drive-thru and front counter for delivery

of food and drinks as well as payment.

Screen Shields: When proper social distancing cannot be ensured, acrylic barriers must

be installed.

Kiosks: Must be sanitized after each guest use or, if not used, every 60 minutes.

Utensils: Must be made available at the front counter only. All utensils must be wrapped

(no self-service).

Drinks: Must be made available at the front counter only (no self-service). New cups

must be provided for each refill.

Food Packaging: All food must be packaged to-go and trays will not be available.




 Contactless/Cashless transactions are encouraged.

 Check presenters must not be used.

 Any necessary payment devices must be sanitized after each use. Provide wipes so

that each customer wipes the device on use.


Must be maintained as single-use for Phase 1 – opening period (with exceptions for special

needs guests).

Surfaces: Must disinfect high touch surfaces hourly (door handles, cubicle closures, sink

levers, manual dispensers, air dryers (if applicable), etc.).

 Any surfaces that become soiled with respiratory secretions or other body fluids, e.g. toilet, handwashing basins must be cleaned with a regular household disinfectant solution

containing 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (that is, equivalent to 1000 ppm).

 Surfaces must be rinsed with clean water after sufficient contact time for the chlorine. The

clean water rinse should happen after 10 minutes contact time for chlorine.

 Whenever possible, use only disposable cleaning materials.

o If a known or suspected COVID19 person used the restaurant restroom, discard

any cleaning equipment made of cloths and absorbent materials, e.g. mophead and wiping cloths.

 When pertinent, disinfect properly non-porous cleaning materials with 0.5% sodium

hypochlorite solution or according to manufacturer’s instructions before using for other


Guest Handwashing: Must maintain adequate levels of hand soap, paper towels, and hand

sanitizer (if applicable). If paper towels are not provided, the restaurant must install a handsfree

door pull (elbow or foot-operated). The preferred drying method is recommended to be


Trash: Must have a trash can by the door if paper towels are used. The trash bin must have

a lid, and the lid should open without the need to handle (touch) the lid. Trash and sanitary

trash must be discarded regularly.



 Guests must wear masks or face covering that covers the mouth and the nose as they leave their tables.

 Guests must maintain social distancing as exiting the restaurant.

 The restaurant must wipe down door handles with each exit (or mirror applicable entry procedures noted above) as guests exit.

 Provide a separate exit from the entrance if feasible and mirror the applicable entry

procedures stated above.


Other Customer Experiences


Curbside Pickup

Curbside Service: Where possible, recommend the use of curbside and contactless

procedures to deliver orders to guests in the designated parking area.


Contactless Procedures: Recommend use of a designated pan to receive payment,

wearing of gloves (back of the house in food prep and front of the house in service), use

of tray or pan to deliver food/drinks, and removal of any self-service elements.

Screen Shields: Acrylic barriers are recommended to be installed as sneeze guards.


Packaging: All delivery services must ensure that packaging is secure for the guest so drivers cannot tamper with the product. Recommend to seal or staple packaging.

Social Distancing: Contactless procedures must be followed when transferring orders to delivery drivers. Ensure that delivery drivers maintain minimum 6-foot social distancing while waiting for orders.

 All third party, contract services and vendor deliveries must maintain minimum 6-foot

social distancing, wear face masks when entering restaurants and wash hands/sanitize

between stops and/or deliveries.