Wednesday, Apr 02 2008 08:57 PM

Rodent infestation temporarily closes restaurant

By VANESSA GREGORY, Californian staff writer e-mail:

Logan’s Roadhouse restaurant was temporarily shut down Tuesday due to a “significant” rat infestation, according to the county’s Environmental Health Services Director Matt Constantine.

The Bakersfield outlet of the Nashville, Tenn.-based steakhouse chain, located on California Avenue near Highway 99, was reopened Wednesday morning, after an environmental health inspector concluded the business no longer posed a food safety risk to the public.

Related Info

Gut check

Consumers can check the inspection records of local restaurants on the county’s Web site: .

Click on the “Restaurant Inspection Results” link in the lower left corner.

Restaurant closures

Since July 1, 2007, the following Kern restaurants were also closed by the health department, but later reopened:

Sonic Burger

3701 Mall View Road, Bakersfield

Violations: No hot water, no potable water

Closure date: Oct. 10

Route 58 Restaurant

13005 Claymine Road, North Edwards

Violations: No refrigeration functioning

Closure date: Aug. 8

Short Stop Liquor

10000 Main St., Lamont

Violations: No hot water

Closure date: Sept. 21

Santa Fe Burrito

5436 California Ave., Bakersfield

Violations: Sewage overflow into facility, hand washing sink violations

Closure date: Oct. 9

Wasabi Express

9000 Ming Ave., Bakersfield

Violations: No hot water

Closure date: Oct. 31

American Deli and Liquor

13001 Stockdale Highway, Bakersfield

Violations: No hot water, hand washing sink violations

Closure date: Oct. 29

(Some restaurants may have had additional violations.)

Source: Kern County Environmental Health Services Department

Restaurant closures are one piece of the letter grade restaurant inspection system implemented by the county in July.

“It’s unusual for us to have to take that degree of enforcement, but it does happen a number of times a year,” Constantine said.

The health department’s Tuesday visit was triggered by a complaint. The restaurant was previously inspected on Nov. 2, when no signs of rats were found.

The extent of the rodent infestation, and evidence the problem had been present for some time, influenced the decision to close the eatery, he said. The restaurant’s management cleaned up the place and met with a licensed pest control operator who sealed up holes and worked to eradicate the pests, Constantine said.

Logan’s was inspected again and opened with an A rating Wednesday morning.

“We adjusted our operation,” said Shannon Niederberger, a spokeswoman for J and A Food Services, the Redding-based franchisee that operates Logan’s.

Niederberger declined to comment on how long the rats had been an issue in the steakhouse.

“We’ve always strived to have a safe and clean facility,” she said.

Since July 1, six other county restaurants have been closed for health violations.

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