Restaurants large and small have to practice safe food handling procedures
to prevent foodborne illnesses, which is why health departments inspect
dining establishments regularly. There are laws in place that determine
how frequently these inspections take place, and what inspectors look for.
Examples of what inspectors look for:
- Food contamination by restaurant workers.
- Cross-contamination between foods, such as raw chicken touching other food.
- Contamination from non-food sources, such as bugs, sick employees, rodents, etc.
We took a look at this
report from the New York State Department of Health, and here are just
some of the violations found by inspectors:
- Dirty surfaces
- Missing handwashing signs
- Inadequate sneeze guards
- Food stored on floor
- Dirty wiping cloths
- Insects and rodents present
- Food not protected during storage
- Handwashing facilities inaccessible
- Not enough refrigeration equipment
- Food contact surfaces not washed
Dirty Restaurants Can Cause Foodborne Illnesses
Many, if not all, of the restaurant violations that fail inspections can
cause foodborne illnesses. According to the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC), there are over 250 foodborne diseases, which can
easily be caused by cross-contamination, an employee handling food and
failing to wash their hands first, inadequate refrigeration, rats, cockroaches,
and so on.
“Most of them [foodborne illnesses] are infections, caused by a variety
of bacteria, viruses, and parasites,” says the
CDC.Additionally, toxins and chemicals can come into food in restaurants, contaminating
the food and causing various foodborne illnesses.
Did You Get Food Poisoning?
The top five germs that are responsible for foodborne illness include Norovirus,
Staphylococcus Aureus. While anyone can get food poisoning, pregnant women, young children, the
elderly, people receiving chemo and radiation, and people with weakened
immune systems are at a higher risk.
Symptoms of food poisoning:
- Stomach Cramps
How Much is My New York Personal Injury Case Worth?
Sometimes foodborne illnesses are so severe that they become life-threatening
or even fatal. If you have fallen ill after eating at a restaurant, you
may have a claim for compensation.
Contact our Long Island personal injury firm to schedule a case evaluation.