A “closed” sign has been posted outside of Carl’s Jr. restaurant on Leva Avenue in Gasoline Alley.
Alberta Health Services confirmed Monday there was no closure order – written or verbal – issued by the agency at this time for the Red Deer area restaurant.
AHS conducts inspections at restaurants provincewide to keep them in check when it comes to food safety practices.
The Advocate could not reach the restaurant Sunday. It is unclear when the local food outlet closed.
The restaurant experienced food safety practice troubles around August 2017 for inappropriate handling of food.
A CBC video, obtained from a former Carl’s employee, showed the co-owner at the time, Jack Webb, stirring a large container of sauce with his bare arm plunged in almost up to his elbow.
Other footage showed other health violations, such as a chicken tender being placed back on a plate after being dropped on the floor.
Webb, who was a second-term councillor in Rimbey at the time, apologized for his actions.
“It is with a humble and contrite heart that I apologize,” he told The Advocate in August 2017. “I own it. I have no excuses and I have learned a valuable lesson.”
Another co-owner at the time, Ed Parkins, told The Advocate not long after the incident that the franchise had passed all reviews by provincial inspectors, and all Carl’s Jr.’s inspections, since the violations came to light.
According to the AHS website, the restaurant was inspected Aug. 9, 11 and 21, and Sept. 29 in 2017.
The Aug. 9 report shows the agency received the video that showed a food handler in a supervisory role “practising unsanitary food handling practices.”
“The food handler was observed to reach his arm into liquid food to mix the food, squeegee food out of a container with his hand during food transfer into another container, choose not to use a utensil in favour of using his hand to directly contact the food,” the report reads.
“(The food handler was seen) to drop a piece of fried chicken on the floor and place it back in the container to be served to guests, drop the french fry scoop on the floor and immediately pick it up and use it to handle food without proper dishwashing, and cause contamination of handles and switches throughout the kitchen by handling raw chicken with hands, then without washing hands, grabbing handles and switches,” it goes on to say.
The more recent inspections at the fast-food eatery were conducted on May 4 and 11 and July 5 in 2018. The latter two show no violations were found by the inspectors.
The May 4 report showed the sandwich preperation area’s food time monitoring board was not current and a correction was requested by AHS.
“Please properly monitor the time food is kept at above 4 C,” the report reads.
Carl’s Jr. menu includes burgers, sides and salads, desserts alongside a kids menu, according to the restaurant website. Alberta locations are in Calgary, Edmonton, Grande Prairie, Lloydminster, Spruce Grove, Bragg Creek among others, the website shows.
One person said “probably didn’t recover from the bad rep it got when the co-owner was caught sticking his arm in BBQ sauce.”
Another user posted, “every time I went in to pick up a delivery order on Skip, it was spotless. Like, impeccably clean.”