Restaurant owners warned about fraudulent inspectors

LITTLE ROCK — The Arkansas Department of Health is alerting restaurant owners statewide about possible fraudulent inspectors.

The health department is not calling restaurants to schedule inspections or giving them a code to call for inspections. Inspections are made unannounced by the health department’s environmental health specialists (EHS).

According to the health department, some people have been posing as health inspectors who are not with the health department. Some restaurants have received phone calls from people claiming to be from the health department and calling to schedule inspections.

Some fraudulent callers were giving restaurant owners a telephone number with a code number and asking them to call that phone number and give the code, however these calls were not from the health department.

Before a restaurant owner/manager allows anyone into their kitchen for an inspection of the food preparation area, they should ask for proper identification. Health department EHS personnel wear badges. If the restaurant staff is not able to verify that the person is an EHS, the restaurant owner/manager should contact the local county health unit.