Lubbock Health Department investigates McDonald’s after viral post claims unsanitary conditions

Updated: Feb. 14, 2020 at 5:42 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - A Facebook post accusing management of allowing unsanitary conditions at the McDonald’s on South Loop 289 near University Ave. has gone viral.

The City of Lubbock Environmental Health Department conducted an investigation on Thursday afternoon.

Prechea Pace has been working at that McDonald’s for a year.

“There’s mold growing in the corner of the refrigerator,” Pace said.

Pace said she began to notice problems at the store, so she brought it to the owner’s attention.

“Ever since then, I’ve been treated differently. My hours have been cut,” Pace said.

Pace decided to leave her job at McDonald’s and then took to Facebook to share her experience.

“I’m going out of my way to be an advocate for the customers,” Pace said.

The City of Lubbock Environmental Health Department report shows seven priorities out of compliance, mostly sanitation issues. Mold was not noted on the report.

“This is what I was trying to point out to y’all and if it takes me showing the world for y’all to buckle down and do something about it then that’s just what it is,” Pace said.

Health Coordinator Stevan Walker said, while they cannot comment on this situation, they take every complaint they receive seriously.

“Maybe those issues exist, maybe they don’t,” Walker said, “but we’re going to be there to determine whether or not they are.”

Pace is now looking for a new job. She said as a mom, her biggest priority is providing for her children and setting a good example.

“If you’re having problems in the workplace, you see something that’s not right, that you should be able to speak up,” Pace said.

Vargas Management, Inc., which handles the operations of the McDonald’s restaurant, sent the following release regarding the recent inspection:

The owner of the restaurant, Hugo Vargas, purchased the facility in 2013, moving his family to Lubbock, Texas from out of state. Since moving to Lubbock, the Vargas family has been very active in the community through sponsorships of various nonprofit organizations, and the family loves calling Lubbock home. We take great pride in the cleanliness of this restaurant and service to the Lubbock community. Upon hearing about the negative social media post concerning this restaurant, and to ensure there were no issues, we contacted the Lubbock Health Department requesting an immediate inspection. The restaurant was inspected both yesterday and today, with no mold found as alleged in social media. Serving safe, high quality food is of the utmost importance. We do not believe the posted pictures on social media accurately represent our restaurant and the standards we strive to meet and exceed daily. Vargas Management is proud of its operation of this McDonald’s restaurant location, and will continue to provide both quality food and great service to Lubbock and its surrounding communities.

The City of Lubbock Environmental Health Department will reinspect the McDonald’s to make sure the violations have been resolved.

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