A food business has been forced to close immediately after environmental health officers found rat droppings in the food preparation area.
Dial a Samosa in Leeds Road, Nelson, makes samosas for businesses to sell on to their customers.
Pendle Borough Council carried out an unannounced inspection on Tuesday October 10th and found rat droppings, gnawed wood, dirt and debris. Officers also spotted holes which gave rodents access to the building.
Philip Mousdale, Corporate Director, said: “We’re committed to ensuring businesses operate safely in our borough and we’ll take tough action where they’re found to put the public at risk.
“It was clear that the building was rat infested so we had no option but to serve the owner with a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice to close the business with immediate effect.”
Last Friday the council presented Burnley Magistrates’ Court with evidence of the findings, which included photographs.
The Council was granted a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order and costs totalling £1,300.
The Order means that Dial a Samosa can’t reopen until Pendle Council is satisfied the premises are clean, free from rats and there is no imminent risk to health.
Coun. Asjad Mahmood, who oversees Pendle’s Housing and Environmental Health, added: “This is a serious and concerning case and I’m pleased our officers took action quickly - rats carry diseases which pose a serious risk to public health.
"The Order will remain in place until the matter is resolved.
“It’s pleasing that the owner of Dial a Samosa is working with us to eradicate the problems.
“We’ve given them clear instructions on what they need to do to remove the health risks and help them reopen the business.”
Before Dial a Samosa can reopen, Pendle Council will re-inspect the premises to make sure that the issues have been resolved.
Pendle Council has clear advice about food handling and food safety to help businesses comply with food safety regulations on its website – www.pendle.gov.uk/foodsafety