KOREAN RESTAURANT SHUT DOWN – “SIGNIFICANT RAT PROBLEM” / SALON OWNER FINED MORE THAN £2,000 FOR ILLEGAL TEETH WHITENING
A Korean restaurant has been closed down by Southwark council’s food safety team after a routine inspection found a catalogue of poor hygiene standards and food safety concerns – including a “significant rat problem”.
Officers were forced to take the unusual step due to the high risk to public health, said a Southwark council spokesperson.
Food safety enforcement officers visited the eatery – well known for its fried chicken – on 23 February after a planned inspection.
Officers had previously visited the premises in September 2016 and issued strong verbal and written warnings to the owner with regard to the poor standards of safety and hygiene.
During the latest inspection officers uncovered evidence of a significant rat problem in the kitchen with rat droppings found on worktop surfaces, on a storage shelf containing dry goods, beneath the refrigerator and the floors. Officers also found contaminated food and filthy kitchen essentials.
“The dire condition of the premises posed an imminent risk to public health and the restaurant was shut down using Hygiene Emergency Prohibition procedures” added the spokesperson..
“The restaurant will remain closed, with all food handling, preparation or sale of food activities prohibited, until permission is granted by the council.
“Officers will be monitoring the progress with improvements on the premises and further formal enforcement action may be taken against the food business operator.
“A public notice has been fixed to door of the restaurant to inform local residents of the prohibition and will remain in place until the premises is re-opened.”
Cllr Barrie Hargrove, Southwark’s cabinet member for communities and safety, said: “It is extremely rare that we decide to close down a food business but this posed too great a public health risk to be allowed to stay open.
“Whilst most local food businesses are safe and enjoyable places to eat, thanks in part to our proactive food safety team, this restaurant flouted their responsibilities and will be held to account.
“The restaurant will only be allowed to reopen once we’re satisfied that necessary steps have been taken to improve matters.”
SALON OWNER FINED MORE THAN £2,000 FOR ILLEGAL TEETH WHITENING
A salon owner who carried out a tooth whitening procedure without being a qualified dentist, has been ordered to pay over £2,000 by a court.
The owner of the salon, who pleaded guilty to a charge under the Dentists Act 1984, was fined £500 by the court, ordered to pay £1,031 in costs to the GDC (General Dental Council) and to pay a further £500 in compensation to the victim – a total of £2,031.
The investigation was led by Southwark council’s trading standards team and the General Dental Council (GDC) after a report by a disgruntled customer in April 2016.
The complaint claimed that following the whitening procedure she had experienced discomfort and ‘shooting pains’ during the treatment and suffered with inflamed gums for a week afterwards.
Southwark’s officers found that although the products used were compliant with the relevant regulations, the procedure should have been done by a dental professional. The matter was therefore passed on to the GDC to take action.
Victoria Sheppard-Jones, interim head of illegal practice at the GDC said: “Our first successful prosecution of 2017 shows that we are continuing to tackle illegal dentistry in order to protect the public from dangerous and potentially harmful work.
“In this case a patient was left in discomfort for a week as a result of the owner not being trained or qualified to do the treatment safely. “That’s why only a registered dental professional is lawfully allowed to do this work.
“For anyone considering tooth whitening, we urge you to check our online register to make sure the individual offering the treatment is a registered dental care professional. “This way you can be confident that the person offering the treatment is legally allowed to do so.”
Cllr Barrie Hargrove, Southwark’s cabinet member for communities and safety, said: “It’s really important that the general public is made aware of the dangers of illegal tooth whitening. “As this case shows, the health risks involved greatly outweigh any cost savings made.
“We have advised all our licensed salons and other special treatments premises that teeth whitening procedures should not be offered unless done by a qualified dental professional. “This result shows the courts will not hesitate to come down hard on those that ignore the law” (Source: Southwark council press releases)