The team inspected the Lancaster BBQ on January 11, 2012 and found no critical food safety violations. A second visit was made on February 2, 2012. During this inspection multiple opportunities for cross contamination were observed including liquid from thawed poultry dripping on the floor of the walk-in cooler which was being tracked throughout the restaurant by employees. A single employee was responsible for grilling meats and for salad preparation. This employee was observed handling salad ingredients without wearing gloves, providing another opportunity for cross contamination.
Local and state public health investigators concluded that between Christmas 2011 and New Year’s Day 2012, an outbreak of Salmonella Enteriditis occurred among Lancaster BBQ customers. Ill patrons were much more likely to report eating salad and BBQ Pork Salad. Environmental investigations suggested that cross contamination was the likely cause of the outbreak.
Marler Clark represented multiple people made sick in this outbreak. On June 4, 2012 the law firm filed a Salmonella lawsuit against Lancaster's BBQ on behalf of a North Carolina couple. That claim has been resolved.