The Orange County Health Care Agency’s database recorded no restaurants or other food vendors shut down in the county by health inspectors since last week. The Orange County Register will suspend publishing a weekly list of restaurant closures until the county updates its inspection database.
As the coronavirus proliferated, the county government issued an order on March 17 calling for all bars, wineries and breweries to close and for restaurants to rope off their dining rooms and offer take-out and delivery only. Two days later, Gov. Gavin Newsom extended a similar order to the entire state.
Many restaurants temporarily closed, as others scrambled to switch to offering to-go meals only.
But the county’s inspectors are still on the job, an agency representative said, making sure restaurant workers are following protocols to slow the spread of the virus as they cook up meals for hungry customers.
“The OC Health Care Agency’s Environmental Health Division’s inspectors, as disaster workers, are primarily focused at this time on educating food facilities about the changing operational landscape in light of COVID-19 (as education enables compliance),” the county Emergency Operations Center said in an email Monday, March 23. “This involves communicating the importance of social distancing, hand washing, increased sanitation and disinfection of surfaces, and hygiene. We continue to respond to all routine complaints, including sewage spills, vermin, food-borne illness, no water or lack of hot water, and hazardous materials.”
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