Risky eating or unfair assumptions?

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – After a rash of restaurant closures due to pest issues, someone in the Summit City has taken it upon himself to rank local restaurants on a new website.  It’s something that’s stirring up controversy.

The details of the recent restaurant closures were far from appetizing.  And they spurred the idea for riskyeating.com.  The creator has ranked almost every local restaurant based on its health inspections.  NewsChannel 15 spoke with the creator who is choosing to remain anonymous.  He told us his idea for riskyeating.com comes from restaurant rating systems other communities have.  But restaurant owners we spoke with Friday question how fair it really is.

“It really bothered me as a consumer, so I wanted to dig in a little deeper,” website creator of riskyeating.com said.

How safe are restaurants here in the Summit City? It’s a question the creator of riskyeating.com says he hopes to answer for folks.  He says he tallied up restaurants’ violations from public inspection reports and created a rating system.

“It’s all a matter of public record, accessible to anybody. We’re just merely putting it into a database and making it easier for the end user.”

Although he’s using information from the Allen County Health Department, the site is no way connected to the health department.

“The information from what it appears is just taken from our public inspection reports which we post on our own website,” Allen County Health Department spokesperson John Silcox said, “I really can’t speak for the process he’s using to evaluate restaurants.”

Restaurant owners who NewsChannel 15 spoke with Friday didn’t want to go on camera.  But they did say his rating system is not fair to local restaurants.  They say all violations carry different levels of severity, and that health inspectors should be the only people who are allowed to rate restaurants.

NewsChannel 15 also uncovered Friday that due to interest from the public, the Allen County Health Department is working on creating it’s own restaurant ranking system.  But officials say it may take some time for them to come up with a fair rating system.

By the way, we did find one more restaurant on the health department’s list of closings.  Officials there say they closed Las Lomas Mexican Grill on Fairfield Avenue last Friday.  Like a lot of the other closings, the reason was cockroaches.  Health leaders did let the restaurant reopen the next day.

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