Food Safety Issues/3 compartment sink setup


I had previously been in the restraunt industry for 10+ years but left it 4 years ago. At my current job, a retailer with a restraunt section, I am occasionally assigned to work the restraunt. Lately they have taken to putting standing water in the rinse sink, where I had been taught (even through ServeSafe) that the rinse water should be running water, that way all soap is rinsed off before sanitizing. Have procedures changed on this in the years that I have been out of the industry? Which is correct, or are they both correct? Thanks.

Hi Rose,

It is not required that the rinse sink in a 3-compartment sink be set-up with running water.  

All that is required is that the 2nd sink -- the rinse sink -- have clean and clear hot water. The water needs to be changed if it becomes dirty with food debris or sudsy with soap residue from the wash sink. Hot water means 110 degrees F.

I'm not aware that there has ever been a requirement for running water in the rinse sink. That doesn't mean you can't rinse using running water, just that it's not required by code.


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Carol Schlitt


I can answer questions on home food safety, sanitation and home food preservation.


I am a former Extension educator, nutrition, wellness and food safety, having retired August 1, 2010. I am a food safety instructor for the Illinois Department of Public Health, a ServSafe Instructor/Proctor and have my own company, Safe & Savory Solutions, Inc -

National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (Past President and current Historian), St. Louis Culinary Society.

BS - University of Illinois MS - Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

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