A TAKEAWAY in Elland has been forced to shut it doors after environmental health officers found it “rife” with a mouse infestation.
JJs, at Town Hall Buildings, Elland, was visited by officers on October 6, and magistrates granted an emergency order to prohibit the use of the premises or equipment for food business.
The order comes six months after a previous visit from inspectors when they found evidence of second, more widespread, infestation. After finding droppings in the basement and some in the kitchen, the owner agreed to a voluntary closure.
They could only reopen once they had acted to stop the infestation. It was then decided inspections had to take place every six months - the most frequent officers can visit.
On this, unannounced, but routine inspection two days ago, droppings were found on, near and in food preparation surfaces, on top of carrier bags and goods used for packaging.
They were also found inside a bain marie and a hot cupboard. One of the inspecting officers told the court within minutes of arriving he had found the first rodent droppings.
Owner Saleem Hussain, said he had employed a pest control firm after the voluntary closure, but records showed except one visit three days after the voluntary closure, they had not returned.
The court was told droppings, if ingested by humans, could cause salmonella, E-coli, and Limes disease.
“There would be a serious risk to health, both short and long-term,” said the officer.
Other premises adjacent to JJs were checked and no evidence of infestation was found.
Calderdale Council’s Head of Housing and Environment, Mark Thompson, said: “With any food business, pest control should be in place and not left to luck.
“It was the thorough inspection and swift action taken by the officers that prevented an outbreak of food poisoning affecting Calderdale residents.”
The takeaway could be allowed to re-open if they prove they have cleaned the premises and rid them of the infestation.