Foodborne illness outbreak investigation
Posted March 28, 2017
After receiving no reports of ill food workers and ensuring that the establishment had been thoroughly disinfected, Public Health authorized Girin to reopen Thursday, March 23rd at 3:00 p.m.
Posted March 23, 2017
Public Health is investigating an outbreak of nausea, vomiting and diarrhea associated with a meal at Girin Restaurant located at 501 Stadium Place S, Seattle. Four people from a single household reported symptoms consistent with norovirus following a meal that was consumed on 3/18/17. We do not have laboratory confirmation, but symptoms are suggestive of norovirus. Often in norovirus outbreaks no laboratory testing is done.
Public Health received the report of illness on Tuesday 3/21/17. As part of the Public Health investigation, Environmental Health inspectors visited the restaurant on 3/22/17. During the field inspection, we identified a violation related to improper handwashing which is a risk factor for spreading norovirus. The restaurant is working cooperatively with Public Health and voluntarily closed on 3/22 to allow time for thorough cleaning and sanitizing. A return visit will be conducted to ensure that the facility has been decontaminated and proper handwashing is being enforced before the restaurant re-opens to the public.
Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that is frequently spread person-to-person and is often associated with food. Norovirus illness often has a sudden onset of nausea and vomiting and/or watery diarrhea with cramps. A low grade fever, chills, and body aches sometimes occur. Norovirus rarely causes severe complications. Dehydration is the most common complication, particularly among young children and the elderly. No vaccine is available for norovirus.
To prevent norovirus infection:
- While cooking shellfish can reduce the risk of norovirus illness, quick steaming or cooking until the shells just open may not be enough to protect against norovirus illness. Norovirus can survive cooking temperatures up to 140°F.
- Wash hands, cutting boards, and counters used for shellfish preparation immediately after use to avoid cross contaminating other foods.
- Wash hands thoroughly with soap after using the bathroom or changing diapers, and before preparing any food or eating.
- Wait at least 48 hours after the last episode of vomiting and/or diarrhea before preparing any food for others.
For more information on norovirus, see: