SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. — Operators of seven food establishments in Snohomish County have received threatening telephone calls from a person falsely claiming to represent Snohomish Health District, the local public health agency responsible for health and food safety inspections of 3,300 food establishments in Snohomish County. The food business operators began reporting the calls to the Health District on June 21, 2010.
One business operator reported the caller threatened to inspect and fine the business $5,000 the next day unless he provided personal information during the telephone call, according to health officials.
“That’s not the way we work, and the Health District is not making those calls,” said Rick Zahalka, manager of the Health District’s food program. “Our food safety inspectors are serious and thorough, but they aren’t asking for personal information nor do they announce their visits.”
Fraudulent telephone calls need to be reported to the Federal Trade Commission http://www.ftc.gov/phonefraud FTC toll-free helpline: 1.877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357); TTY: 1.866.653.4261
Established in 1959, the Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier community through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. Find more information about the Health District at www.snohd.org.