Tucson, AZ

Local Pizza Restaurant Nearly Fails Health Inspection

Greyson F
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A local pizza restaurant did not perform well on its health inspection.Photo byMarkus SpiskeonUnsplash

There’s nothing like a slice of pizza. Whether after a long day of work, after a kid’s sporting event, or you want something everyone can enjoy during the big game, pizza is often the best (and most affordable) option. Of course, you want to make sure your pizza place is not only tasty but up to health code standards. For the most part, every pizza restaurant around Tucson is, but one local spot did not perform adequately and was given an impending “Needs Improvement” grade. This means, another inspection is fast approaching, and the restaurant will either pass or fail.

On October 26, the county health inspector paid a visit to Hungry Howie’s Pizza at 150 North Pantano Road. During the inspection, six violations were identified. The first issue was with all of the hand-washing sinks inside the restaurant. Neither of the sinks was able to produce hot water. Upon closer inspection, the hot water valve didn’t work at all. Water must be at least 100 degrees in order to properly disinfect bacteria and germs on the skin. The sink also was unable to produce adequate water pressure. The Person In Charge (PIC) was told the health inspector would return in 10 days to make sure the sink had been corrected.

Due to a delay in the county reporting, the repeat visit has already occurred, but the information will not yet be available for another several days.

Another sink in the restaurant had been blocked in with food shipments, making it impossible to access. The PIC was informed it is critical for employees to always have access to the sinks. This issue would also be checked during the repeat visit.

Storage and how materials are kept is very important in the restaurant world. This was one of the areas Hungry Howie’s Pizza did not perform well in. During the inspection, a stainless steel cleaner was found stored on a rack directly above food items. This can result in harmful chemicals dripping down onto the food.

Lastly, the three-comp sink, which is where dishes are cleaned and disinfected did not allow enough water to mix in the different cleaning solutions. The PIC did tell the inspector that the staff would manually adjust the sinks by adding more water in order to obtain the proper concentration of the cleaning chemicals. Once again, the inspector informed the PIC they had 10 days to make the necessary repairs.


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