Agency takes lye from Chinese restaurant after kids sickened

Written by The Associated Press | Mar 7, 2017 6:21 PM

Photo by Paul Kuehnel, York Daily Record

Jerry Heisey, of Food Safety Consultants of Central PA, explains the importance of separating a kitchen into raw, left, and cooked preparation areas, at Round The Clock Diner in Springettsbury Township. The restaurant passed its annual inspection. Heisey, a former state inspector, was demonstrating what happens during an inspection.

(Lancaster) -- Pennsylvania health inspectors are testing crystal lye taken from a Chinese buffet where two children were severely sickened drinking what they believed to be apple juice.

State inspectors said Tuesday they found violations but no imminent health threat at the Star Buffet and Grill near Lancaster.

Township officials, however, closed the restaurant for alleged building violations.

Two children suffered burn-type injuries to their mouths and throats Friday after drinking juice in disposable cups. They remained hospitalized Tuesday in good condition.

State officials don't yet know what caused the injuries. Tests on the juice are pending.

Inspectors found one bottle of lye beneath a sushi buffet table and open bottles in a storage area. They say they believed it was used as a cleaning agent.

The buffet's phone wasn't accepting messages.

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