A McDonald’s location has temporarily closed due to a food-poisoning outbreak involving 22 people.
The McDonald’s located right outside of Jamestown, NY at 2803 N. Main St. Ext. voluntarily closed up shop following a request from the Chautauqua County Department of Health while investigations are carried out.
There has been no definitive proof that the cause of illness originated from the McDonald’s franchise as of yet.
However, they are taking precautionary measures to ensure that, in the event they are responsible, no one else experiences food-poisoning after eating at the popular fast-food restaurant.
All of the 22 cases report experiencing all of the hallmark symptoms of food-poisoning, including nauseousness, diarrhea, and vomiting.
The New York Department of Health has interviewed 15 of the 22 people who reported symptoms, and it was discovered that all of them had eaten breakfast sandwiches from the Main St. location between August 4th-21st.
A joint statement released by the NY Dept. of Health and the Chautauqua Co. Dept. of Health confirms the franchise’s cooperation with the two regulatory entities.
“McDonald’s is fully cooperating with this investigation and is readily following all recommendations of the State and County Health Departments while this investigation continues.”
Various breakfast sandwiches have been sent to New York State’s Public Health Laboratory in Albany, along with samples from those who reported being ill after consuming the sandwiches.
The franchise owner, Enrico Francani told Business Insider that he is taking the opportunity to thoroughly clean the area while he awaits new shipments of all ingredients.
“We are cooperating with the local state health departments as they investigate reports of an unidentified illness and its source, because the health and safety of our customers is always our top priority. Out of an abundance of caution, we proactively closed a restaurant for cleaning and sanitation. We look forward to reopening soon.”
The company’s decision to take a proactive stance and get ahead of the problem is comforting, considering this outbreak comes right after another incident involving the iconic food chain.
The 16 states comprise most of the Midwest, encompassing over 3,000 locations.
Salads were pulled from every one of them and weren’t offered again until the locations had been sanitized and the famous franchise could locate another supplier for their lettuce.
While the food-poisoning outbreak has only affected a fraction of the number of people as the Cyclospora outbreak, it’s a good idea to take progressive action in eliminating the concern. Especially considering how many people eat there.
With “billions and billions served”, one can expect an outbreak of some kind to come along once in a while.
However, to have two outbreaks back to back leaves consumers with doubts about the practices of McDonald’s.
In light of these concerns Christine Schuyler, the County Public Health Director, told The Post-Journal that at least so far, there is no reason to ban the local franchise from your family’s diet. While some of the tests haven’t come back yet, the ones that have are hopeful for the franchise.
“Preliminary testing has come back negative. We are working diligently with the state Health Department and McDonald’s representatives to conduct a thorough epidemiological investigation into these illnesses.”
Schuyler goes on to clarify that before jumping the gun, we should be aware that whether or not McDonald’s is truly the culprit for these 22 cases is still unclear.
“There is currently no identified source of these illnesses and there is no evidence that the illness can be spread from person to person.”
So, what does this mean for the franchise?
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Environmental Director, Mark Stowe, confirmed in an interview with The Post Journal that while the location is temporarily closed due to the outbreak, there have been no other locations tied the reports of illness.
“We are confident in saying no other McDonald’s locations were involved.”
According to the statement, the franchise owner is doing everything in his power to remedy the situation. The company will be,
“reviewing the food preparation and distribution process in conjunction with county staff, obtaining a fresh supply of ingredients prior to restarting food production and conducting a follow up meeting with the Chautauqua County Health Department to ensure all recommendations were appropriately met.”
In the meantime, you can go ahead and enjoy your McD’s favorites at any of their other 14,145 locations across the U.S.