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News / Health / Clark County Health

Rats lead to closures in McDonald’s in Vancouver Wal-Mart Supercenter

Bakery and deli also closed for 48 hours by public health officials

By Marissa Harshman, Columbian Health Reporter
Published: November 17, 2017, 12:08pm

Health officials have temporarily closed portions of the Vancouver Wal-Mart Supercenter and the McDonald’s restaurant inside the store after discovering rats.

Clark County Public Health responded Thursday to a complaint from a McDonald’s employee regarding rats at the restaurant and Wal-Mart store at 221 N.E. 104th Ave. Following an inspection, health officials closed the restaurant and the Wal-Mart bakery and deli for at least 48 hours, said Don Strick, Clark County Public Health spokesman.

Health officials assessed the construction of the store — such as ceilings and walls — and decided which areas to close based on where rats easily could have gained access to food preparation areas, said Joe Laxson, program manager for environmental public health.

Officials believe the rats are confined to those areas, he said.

“There is no evidence that food merchandise has been affected,” Strick said. “But (Clark County Public Health) closed the facilities as a precaution.”

Public health is now working with a pest management company performing the abatement, as well as store management, to assess the situation. Health officials will continue to conduct inspections of the restaurant, deli and bakery to determine the next steps.

“At a minimum, we will want to ensure that rodents do not pose a risk to food safety and that the facility is thoroughly cleaned,” Laxson said.

The earliest the McDonald’s and store deli and bakery could reopen is Saturday, but findings from the ongoing investigation will determine when the actual reopening occurs, Laxson said.

Columbian Health Reporter