As the nation's largest drive-in chain for 60 years, Sonic advertises hot and fresh made-to-order food. But near that food was almost 60 live and dead roaches inside one local kitchen.
On June 15, inspectors shut down Sonic at 4667 Commercial Way in Spring Hill for over 24 hours after finding dozens of roaches inside the kitchen.
The state saw those roaches under the soft-serve ice cream machine, near the storage shelf in the dish area, the prep table by the fryers, in a box of wrappers, under a cooler and by the front desk.
Among the 33-violations documented in two days last week, inspectors discovered a black/green mold-like substance in the interior of the ice machine and in the ice chute along with duct tape on the inside of the ice machine. They issued a stop sale on all ice.
According the inspection report, the kitchen was in a state of disrepair with debris on the floor, under shelving, vents broken in the ceiling, the floor covered with standing water, drains heavily soiled, floor tiles missing in front of the soda machine, mold in the reach-in coolers and on the cook line, and water leaking under the three-compartment sink and by the prep table.
Inspectors also documented a large amount of unused equipment that is flammable and improperly stored, including a lawn mower, power washer, and weed trimmer stored near dry storage and food.
In addition, the restaurant was operating with an expired license.
ABC Action News anchor Wendy Ryan spoke to Jason Acock, communications manager for Sonic Drive-In, Tuesday afternoon and he told her he would send a statement to explain what happened. ABC Action News had not heard back from Acock by Tuesday night.
Ryan also called the restaurant multiple times but no one answered.