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Local restaurant temporarily closes after possible COVID-19 exposure

Coronavirus in Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Local Tex-Mex restaurant, José Peppers, temporarily closed its doors after an employee tested positive for COVID-19. The restaurant located on North Tyler posted a sign on its doors indicating the restaurant would close for cleaning and sanitation purposes.

Matt Hench, area director Jose Peppers, told KSN that the Sedgwick County Health Department reached out to the restaurant chain Thursday after an employee tested positive. The franchise immediately took action by shutting their doors and testing the rest of the staff.

“Everybody in the kitchen has been tested, and all the tests have come back negative,” Hench said, “But we took the precaution to go ahead and close and sanitize the store. We had the store sanitized the closed down that night, when we were made aware of the situation.”

Hench says Jose Peppers takes the safety of their staff and customers very seriously and have made their best efforts to protect the public by being as transparent as possible.

The west location on Tyler Road will be closed for the rest of the weekend, but the restaurant hopes to reopen later next week. However, the cooks tested are not allowed to return until next Saturday according to the Area Director. The east Jose Peppers, located at 11423 E 13th Street North, is still open for curbside and carryout orders.

“Obviously, we’d like to get it reopened as soon as possible, but we’re going to err on the side of safety here,” Hench said. “We’ve not had to close the store before. This is the first time this has happened to us.”

Sedgwick County residents can call United Way of the Plains by dialing 2-1-1 in order to schedule an appointment to be tested by the SCHD at one of the mobile testing sites whether a person has COVID-19 symptoms or not.

Most common COVID-19 symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Chills or shivering
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue or feeling more tired than normal

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