WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – Although it may not look like it right now, summer is right around the corner, which means restaurants and businesses throughout Ohio County are going to get even busier. The Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department wants to give the public a few safety reminders.  

Ohio County has hundreds of establishments the health department monitors to ensure all safety protocols are followed. Each establishment is required to follow safety measures set in place by the federal government as well as the state of West Virginia to keep the public safe.  

More specifically, restaurants here in the Friendly City are required to follow rules within the USDA food code.  

The Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department explains that food regulations cover a lot of areas like employees, the facility, the food, and the management of that food.  

“Individuals that are going to work in a food establishment need to either be employed, or owners or contract staff of that establishment. They either have food cards, or they own the place or they are a delivery, or they’re maintenance or they’re fixing something. They’re approved to be back in a food establishment. Anybody else, from adults to kids, that are not part of the food establishment need to be on the other side of the divider between food prep area and customer area.”  

Howard Gamble | Director, Wheeling Ohio County Health Dept.

Gamble says anyone can report a public health issue to the health department. This can be done via a phone call or email, and complaints can remain anonymous.  

When making a report, be sure to give the location, the issue, and any other details that can help inspectors understand the problem.  

Gamble said calls are better than social media postings, as a post is more of an announcement than a complaint.