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Burger King Restaurant Re-Opens

24 May 2002

Burger King Restaurant Re-Opens With Full Assurance

Burger King is re-opening its restaurant in Hastings following a voluntary closure on Sunday last week. The restaurant will re-open this afternoon following five days of extensive work to ensure the absolute safety of staff and customers.

The closure on Sunday was taken as a precautionary step to eliminate any potential risk to staff and customers following the diagnosis of one of the staff members with symptoms of the Hepatitis A virus.

“We have followed the guidance of the Hawkes Bay District Health Board’s Public Health Unit on the issue of both our staff, and the sanitisation of the Restaurant,” said Glenn Corbett, General Manager Marketing, Burger King.

“While they did not require us to close in the first instance, we wanted to ensure we did everything to eliminate possible risk to our customers and staff.

“This has been a terribly unfortunate incident for Burger King and the community of Hastings, but as no further cases have been discovered to date, we are optimistic that the possible spread of the virus has been contained by the very stringent food handling and hygiene procedures that are in place throughout all Burger King Restaurants.

“Our entire focus has been on the safety and well being of our staff and customers throughout the last week. We would like to take the opportunity to thank our customers for their understanding and support during this time.”

Burger King has been determined not to re-open the restaurant until every possible area of risk has been eliminated.

“We have been working with the Public Health Unit on two core areas this week to ensure that the staff returning to our restaurant are clear of the virus associated with the affected staff member, and secondly, to go to extreme measures to sanitise the restaurant and completely eliminate any possible chance of the virus still being present in any way,” said Mr Corbett..

“All staff selected to work in the re-opened restaurant have been cleared by the Public Health Unit of any risk of carrying the virus associated with the Hastings staff member affected.

“In line with the advice from the Public Health Unit and other related authorities, we have also undertaken a number of extensive cleaning, disinfecting and sanitising procedures.

“These include the application of a special grade Chlorine based disinfecting sanitiser known to kill the virus, to every area of the restaurant even in areas where no one will physically go.

“In addition to the special Chlorine based sanitiser used, we have applied an approved commercial grade sanitiser as a further precaution.

“We have left no area untouched, with particular emphasis on the kitchen, food preparation areas, and the bathroom. We have also employed an independent contractor to steam clean every area possible at above 85C, having been advised that the virus is killed at 60.

“All cleaning agents applied have been approved for use in food handling environments and present no risk to food safety following the completion of the process.

“The BK Hastings restaurant has simply got to be the cleanest and most sanitized restaurant of any restaurant anywhere in New Zealand.”

Mr. Corbett says Burger King understands the uncertainty some customers may have in returning to its Hastings Restaurant to enjoy the world famous Whopper but says it’s not possible for any aspect of the virus associated with the affected Hastings staff member to have survived the recent blitz of the restaurant.

“Our staff and customers can be totally confident about returning to BK Hastings. We have made the greatest possible commitment to re-opening only after every step necessary for confidence in safety and hygiene has been taken.”

Burger King plans to thank the people of Hastings for their support by running a very special opening promotion within the next week.


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