Frequently Asked Questions
What types of businesses are inspected?
You will be able to find current inspection reports on the following public facilities:
- Restaurants and food carts, cafeteria’s, banquet halls, catering companies, grocery stores, and convenience stores that serve food
- Institutions that serve food (e.g., child care centres, long-term care facilities)
- Salons and spas (e.g., hair salons, manicures and pedicures)
- Tattoo and piercing parlours
- Public swimming pools, hot tubs, splash/spray pads and wading pools
- Recreational camps for kids
- Well water systems that serve public facilities
- Tanning beds
- Licensed before and after school programs
We do not provide inspection reports for special events (i.e. fairs, festivals, etc.) and/or farmers' markets.
How often are facilities inspected?
- Food: The number of inspections is determined by the risk level. Risk level depends on several factors that may increase the chance of foodborne illness. High risk facilities (e.g. a full-service restaurant) are inspected once every four months. Moderate risk facilities (e.g. a coffee shop) are inspected every six months. Low risk facilities (e.g. a convenience store) are inspected at least once a year.
- Hair, Aesthetics, Tattoo and Body Piercings: Inspected at least once a year
- Licensed Child Care Settings: Inspected at least once a year
- Indoor Public Pools and Hot Tubs: Inspected at least once every three months, while in operation
- Outdoor Public Pools and Hot Tubs: Inspected at least twice a year, while in operation
- Splash Pads, Water Slides, and Wading Pools: Inspected at least once a year, while in operation
- Recreational Camps: Inspected at least once a year, while in operation
- Small Drinking Water Systems: The number of inspections is determined by a risk assessment of the previous inspections results. High risk systems are inspected once every two years, moderate and low risk systems are inspected once every four years.
We may inspect facilities more often. This would be the case for re-inspections, when a complaint is received from a member of the public, or to follow up a possible food or waterborne outbreak.
What do online inspection reports tell me?
The results of all inspections posted on this website describe what the Public Health Inspector observed at the time of the inspection. This website is not intended to guarantee the conditions of a premises at all times and should not be relied upon for that purpose.
The online report will tell you the facility name, location, type of facility, type of inspection and will detail whether any areas of non-compliance were found during the inspection. It may tell you if an issue is corrected during the inspection and/or whether follow up was required. It will also show any legal action taken.
How long are inspection results available online for?
Inspection reports will be available online for a period of two years.
How often is the website updated?
Inspection reports and other online results are updated weekly. While every effort is made to ensure that the information on this site is updated weekly, Southwestern Public Health cannot guarantee that all information is always current.
Does the facility know when an inspector is coming?
No. Most inspections are unscheduled and done unannounced. In rare situations, (e.g. a facility doesn't have regular operating hours) an inspection may be scheduled.
What happens if infractions are found during an inspection?
The owner/operator of the facility must fix the problems within a suitable time frame, as decided upon by the Public Health Inspector. A Public Health Inspector may do a re-inspection depending on how serious the problems were. Infractions that would not cause an immediate health risk may be followed up at the next routine inspection.
If there are continuous infractions, legal action can be taken such as tickets, summons, or orders. Closure orders are given when a Public Health Inspector sees hazardous conditions that cannot be corrected immediately.
Why would a Public Health Inspector close a facility?
An inspector may close an establishment if he/she believes that an immediate health hazard exists. A facility may be closed for the following reasons:
- Foodborne illness outbreak
- No potable water (not suitable for drinking)
- No source of power
- Sewage backup
- Unsanitary conditions
- Insect or rodent infestation
- Heat, smoke or water damage
What does “No Action Required” mean?
An inspection was completed, and no problems were found at the time of the inspection.
What is a critical infraction?
A critical infraction is a problem that presents an immediate or potential health hazard that needs to be corrected right away. Examples of critical infractions include hazardous food being kept out at room temperature for long periods of time, not being able to see the black disc at the bottom of a public pool, or a nail salon is not using appropriate sanitizer to sanitize their equipment.
What is a non-critical infraction?
Non-critical infractions are problems that present minimal health risk but should be fixed in a required time frame. Examples of non-critical infractions include a food handler not confining their hair during food preparation, bather load is not being recorded at a public pool, or poor client record keeping at a hair salon.
When would a re-inspection be done?
A public health inspector will determine if a re-inspection is needed based on the problems found during the routine inspection. Non-serious problems that are seen during a routine inspection can often be followed up with at the next routine inspection; however, most problems will require a re-inspection.
What do the "Inspection types" mean?
- Routine Inspections: Regular inspections required by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. These inspections are not generally scheduled in advance.
- Re-inspections: Conducted to make sure any serious problems found on a routine inspection have been corrected.
- Complaint Inspections: Conducted when a complaint is received about a facility.
- Outbreak Investigations: Conducted when there is an outbreak of food or waterborne illness and the premises may be involved.
- Re-calls: Conducted to ensure that a recalled food item has been removed from sale.
What does “non-compliance” mean?
“Non-compliance” means that the requirement listed on the report has not been satisfied and infraction(s) have been recorded.
What does “infraction” mean?
An “infraction” refers to when a facility does not meet a legal requirement of the Regulation. Other terms include “violation” or “contravention.”
What does “corrected during inspection” (CDI) mean?
“Corrected during inspection” means that an infraction that was found during an inspection and the operator was able to correct it immediately and a re-inspection is not needed.
Why can’t I find a facility?
Try entering less information in your search. For example, if you enter “pizza” you will not see any facility with “pizzeria” in the facility name. If you enter “pizz” you will see the facilities with “pizza” or “pizzeria” in the name.
Still can’t find it? Call us at 1-800-922-0096. Our office hours are Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm
Who should I contact if I want to make a complaint about a business?
The information you provide will be kept private and is not shared with the owner, operator, or any employee of the facility.