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The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) are investigating an outbreak of Salmonella, a bacteria that is a common cause of food poisoning. As of September 22, 2023, CDPH has identified 55 individuals with Salmonella infections who ate prepared food from a taqueria in Carniceria Guanajuato located at 3140 N California in Chicago. Of these, 10 people have been hospitalized. Carniceria Guanajuato voluntarily closed the taqueria on September 8, 2023 and is cooperating with CDPH to determine a source of the infections. If you have purchased prepared food from the taqueria or the prepared food section of the grocery store since August 29, 2023, discard it and do not eat it. If you ate food purchased from the prepared food section (taqueria or prepared foods in the grocery section) since August 29, 2023, you may have been exposed to Salmonella.
CDPH performed an environmental assessment of the grocery store and provided guidance on safe food handling practices and environmental cleaning to prevent further spread of disease. CDPH has also issued an alert to area physicians about the outbreak, providing medical guidance.
Here is the inspection from September 8:
15. FOOD SEPARATED AND PROTECTED – Comments: OBSERVED RAW BEEF STEAK AND RAW SHELLED EGGS STORED ABOVE READY TO EAT FOODS (SLICED LETTUCE) INSIDE PREP COOLER IN THE RESTAURANT SIDE. INSTRUCTED MANAGER ALL READY TO EAT FOODS MUST BE PROPERLY STORED ABOVE RAW/UNDERCOOKED FOOD SO THEY WILL NOT CROSS CONTAMINATE READY TO EAT FOOD PRODUCTS. PRIORITY VIOLATION 7-38-005 CITATION ISSUED. | 16. FOOD-CONTACT SURFACES: CLEANED & SANITIZED – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO DETAIL CLEAN AND MAINTAINTAIN INTERIOR SURFACES OF ICE MACHINE WITH MINERAL DEPOSITS AND SOIL BUILD-UP (RESTAURANT SIDE). | 22. PROPER COLD HOLDING TEMPERATURES – Comments: FOUND TCS FOODS (SLICED TOMATOES) AT IMPROPER TEMPERATURE REQUIREMENT DURING STORAGE AND SERVICE IN PREP COOLER (AIR TEMPERATURE 36.2F). SLICED TOMATORES INTERNAL TEMPERATURE OF 48.9F. INSTRUCTED MANAGER TCS FOODS MUST MAINTAIN COLD HOLDING TEMPERATURE OF BELOW 41.0F AND HOT HOLDING TEMPERATURE OF ABOVE 135F. MANAGER DISCARDED THE SAID FOOD PRODUCT. TOTAL WEIGHT 5 LBS, TOTAL VALUE $4.00 PRIORITY VIOLATION 7-35-005 CITATION ISSUED | 36. THERMOMETERS PROVIDED & ACCURATE – Comments: SOME COOLERS MISSING CONSPICUOUSLY PLACED THERMOMETERS. INSTRUCTED TO PROVIDE THERMOMETER VISIBLE INSIDE ALL COOLERS. | 37. FOOD PROPERLY LABELED; ORIGINAL CONTAINER – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO PROPERLY LABEL FOOD STORAGE CONTAINERS IDENTIFIED WITH COMMON NAME (GARLIC POWDER, BLACK PEPPER, BAY LEAVES ETC) IN THE BASEMENT FOOD STORAGE AREA. | 37. FOOD PROPERLY LABELED; ORIGINAL CONTAINER – Comments: OBSERVED STORE MADE SALSA, PICO DE GALLO AND GUACAMOLE IN PRE-PACKAGED CONTAINERS IN DISPLAY COOLER WITH MISSING INGREDIENTS. INSTRUCTED TO PROVIDE LIST OF INGREDIENTS FOR EACH PRODUCT. | 47. FOOD & NON-FOOD CONTACT SURFACES CLEANABLE, PROPERLY DESIGNED, CONSTRUCTED & USED – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO REFINISH OR REPLACE (2) CUTTING BOARDS WITH DEEP SEAMS AND STAIN IN RESTAURANT PREP/COOKING AREA. | 47. FOOD & NON-FOOD CONTACT SURFACES CLEANABLE, PROPERLY DESIGNED, CONSTRUCTED & USED – Comments: OBSERVED FOOD COLANDER DENTED AND BROKEN (IN RESTAURANT PREP/COOKING AREA). INSTRUCTED TO REPLACE. | 47. FOOD & NON-FOOD CONTACT SURFACES CLEANABLE, PROPERLY DESIGNED, CONSTRUCTED & USED – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO REPLACE OR REPAINT RUSTED METAL RACKS ABOVE 3 COMPARTMENT SINK IN RESTAURANT PREP/COOKING AREA. | 48. WAREWASHING FACILITIES: INSTALLED, MAINTAINED & USED; TEST STRIPS – Comments: FOUND OVERSIZE COOKING POTS IN REAR MAIN (KITCHEN) COOKING AREA UNABLE TO SUBMERGED IN A 3 COMPARTMENT SINK. INSTRUCTED TO PROVIDE A WRITTEN DETAILED WASHING, RINSING AND SANITIZING PROCEDURE FOR FOOD-CONTACT EQUIPMENT THAT IS TOO LARGE TO BE SUBMERGED IN THE THREE COMPARTMENT SINK FOR PROPER WASH, RINSE AND SANITIZE. | 51. PLUMBING INSTALLED; PROPER BACKFLOW DEVICES – Comments: OBSERVED UTILITY HOSE CONNECTED DIRECT TO FAUCET (NEXT TO 3 COMPARTMENT SINK) IN REAR MAIN KITCHEN/COOKING AREA. INSTRUCTED TO PROVIDE BACKFLOW PREVENTER DEVICE. | 55. PHYSICAL FACILITIES INSTALLED, MAINTAINED & CLEAN – Comments: OBSERVED CONDENSATION THROUGHOUT CEILING INSIDE MEAT WALK-IN COOLER. INSTRUCTED TO REPAIR. | 55. PHYSICAL FACILITIES INSTALLED, MAINTAINED & CLEAN – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO DETAIL CLEAN AND MAINTAIN CONDENSER FAN COVER WITH DUST ACCUMULATION INSIDE DAIRY WALK-IN COOLER. | 55. PHYSICAL FACILITIES INSTALLED, MAINTAINED & CLEAN – Comments: INSTRUCTED TO REMOVE UNNECESSARY ITEMS ESPECIALLY NEXT TO THE BASEMENT EMPLOYEE WASHROOM AND UNUSED COOKING EQUIPMENT STORED IN THE BASEMENT STORAGE AREA TO PREVENT PEST HARBORAGE.
Salmonella symptoms usually last four to seven days and most individuals recover without any treatment. Although most infections resolve without antibiotics, older individuals or those with weakened immune systems may need medical evaluation and treatment. If you are experiencing severe diarrhea, symptoms of dehydration, or high fever, seek medical attention. Most people who are infected develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps between 6 hours and 6 days after eating contaminated food. For more information on Salmonella, visit www.cdc.gov/salmonella.
Salmonella: Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Salmonella outbreaks. The Salmonella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Salmonella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $850 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Salmonella lawyers have litigated Salmonella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as cantaloupe, tomatoes, ground turkey, salami, sprouts, cereal, peanut butter, and food served in restaurants. The law firm has brought Salmonella lawsuits against such companies as Cargill, ConAgra, Peanut Corporation of America, Sheetz, Taco Bell, Subway and Wal-Mart.
If you or a family member became ill with a Salmonella infection, including Reactive Arthritis or Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark Salmonella attorneys for a free case evaluation.