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Sonic Restaurant Shut Down Over Grease Buildup.

The Sonic fast-food restaurant in Washington was shut down Monday morning due to sanitation problems, according to the Franklin County Health Department.

The violations posed an “imminent health hazard,” the health department’s inspection report states.

The report was obtained by The Missourian as a result of a Sunshine Law request.

“Cockroaches are still running around on top of equipment,” the report adds.

Rodent droppings were present.There were “numerous critical violations involving sanitation,” said Tony Buel, health department epidemiology specialist.

Most of the sanitation problems involved grease, Buel said.

“A lot of their food containers were grease covered, and they were continuing to use them without cleaning them properly so then bacteria can grow in that,” Buel said.

If you have bacteria growing on your food containers you’re putting ready-to-eat food on then that’s definitely a critical violation.

Any food-contact surface that’s dirty is a critical violation.

The Missourian called Sonic for comment, but a man who answered the phone had no comment. Soda fountains covered in syrup and unsanitary, and open mouse traps were found behind the water heater.

The mop sink covered in mold, and employee lockers were rusty. All the air vents in the building needed cleaning because of a build-up of dust and grease.

The restaurant’s vent hood was not functioning and caused grease to build up in the ceiling and cover air vents, the health department’s inspection report states.

The fire suppression hood was supposed to be inspected every six months, but it had not been done in five years, Buel said.

The Sonic was still closed Tuesday morning, but Buel said he heard efforts were being made to clean it so it could reopen. The health department worked with the city of Washington on the investigation, Buel said.