DOH Closes Village KFC/Taco Bell Because Of Rat Infestation
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A Greenwich Village fast food restaurant was closed Friday morning after a massive rat infestation was caught on tape.
Department of Health officials shut down a KFC/Taco Bell restaurant on Sixth Avenue at Fourth Street, which has been cited several times in the last two years for having evidence of mice and rats.
The video shows rats on the floor in the kitchen and dining area, as well as climbing on tables.
The DOH confirms that along with the rats, rat droppings were found all over the area where the food is prepared and served.
“Today this establishment had serious and unsanitary conditions, vermin issues” said a DOH spokesperson.
Yum Brands, which owns the restaurants, calls this an isolated incident and says construction in the basement brought the rats out into the open.
"Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our customers,” said Yum Brands spokesman Rick Maynard.
But neighborhood locals say they will not be "thinking outside the bun" any time soon.
"I work next door but I never ate from this place because they never mop the floor," said one local. "Or, look at the window, look at the showcase, it's really dirty."
"I mean all those times I thought I was eating chicken, what was I really eating?" asked another local resident. "That's the question. And I liked it, which is even worse."
Other New Yorkers think the mess should just be cleaned up.
"I don't think it should be closed," said another area resident. "I think they should clean it up and get back to business. I mean, how many things are they going to close in New York? Rats are everywhere. I mean, there are in the subways. Are they going to close the subways?"
The city health department says the restaurant will not be re-opened until it comes up with a plan to correct the problem. It will also have to pass another inspection.
All of this comes on the heels of the E. coli scandal that hit Taco Bell restaurants in December. At the time there were 71 confirmed cases linked to Taco Bell restaurants in five states, including 22 in New York State and one in Manhattan.