Dead mice, roaches, mold found in local Carrabba's

June 22, 2010 3:49:21 PM PDT
The Carrabba's restaurant on Street Road in Bensalem was shut down following an visit from authorities.

The closure, which began on Monday, ended Tuesday afternoon following a return visit from the health inspector.

The restaurant was checked out for more than an hour. Afterward they allowed the Carrabba's to open "conditionally," and customers could be seen going inside for dinner.

Still, the news caused some people to change their dinner plans, including one woman who said she was going home to have peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

The restaurant was closed on Monday following a phone complaint that prompted the Bucks County Department of Health to send an inspector.

Among the inspector's comments:

-Dead mice, mouse droppings, flies, roaches, dead roaches, and earthworms were observed throughout the facility.

-Mold was growing inside the ice bins and food debris, decaying food, and stagnant water was inside the refrigeration units.

-Broken glass was found in the bottom of the glass chiller at the bar.

In all there were 14 violations, many of them also cited in previous inspections. The inspector also said there appeared to be no managerial control over the operation.

A company spokesman apologized for the closure, saying; "The results are completely contrary to our standards and unacceptable. We are devoting all necessary personnel and resources to remedy all deficiencies."

Diners who pulled up to the restaurant on Tuesday afternoon were shocked by the news.

"I was hungry but, I don't know. Maybe I'm not so hungry anymore!" said Conrad Lokey, who also said he was "Grossed out."

The Health Department said it will be watching.

"We're interested in compliance, with all of the regulations and the protection of the public's health," said health inspector Dennis Bauer. "I'm sure that they are too, now."

Health officials also stressed they would not have allowed the restaurant to reopen if they did not feel it was safe for customers.