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Yelp to post sanitation scores for Wake County restaurants

Posted October 3, 2013

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— Yelp can help people find all kinds of services in their area, along with user reviews, but the website will now publish the latest sanitation inspection grades for Wake County restaurants.

County officials said the partnership with Yelp is a no-brainer.

"This is absolutely an example of transparency in government," said Bill Greeves, Wake County's chief information officer. "We have this data already, so we want to be able to share it with the audience that might be interested in it in the best way possible. Overall, it's really a great citizen service. Providing easier access to that information is really what it's all about."

Wake County is only the third location in the country to offer inspection information. San Francisco and Louisville are the others.

The sanitation scores go live at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

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  • Mon Account Oct 11, 2013

    I just checked - Yelp is posting the grade along with a link to the list of violations. It only lists the violations, not the point values of them.

    It's a quick way to get an overview, but the wake county site has much more detail.

  • DrJ Oct 7, 2013

    Agree! The current grading system is horrible. They practically need to find dead customers stacked in the kitchen before they drop to anything below an A! We need a full scale being used, so there will be incentives for restaurants to keep things clean and safe.

  • Mon Account Oct 4, 2013

    Agreed, tdebord. Many small infractions can get them a 'B', like bracelets on wrists, a pesky fly, dirty trash bins, etc. Or one big infraction, like mixing uncooked meats in one container and storing food in broken refrigerators - the stuff that can sicken people.

    Just an aside: Yelp is known for loaded reviews and a questionable rating system. Adding these unreliable scores out-of-context won't be much help.

    When I check a sanitation grade I go to wakegov's site and pull up a digital copy. That restaurant with a 96 grade may be from dings on improperly stored/handled food and not just a dirty bathroom sink... Hopefully Yelp will offer a link to the details.

    And if not Yelp... maybe UrbanSpoon will step up!

    Will yelp link directly to reports or just dump a confusing grade out there?

  • tjdebord Oct 4, 2013

    The challenge for most people is that those sanitation grades make no sense. Example: Most people would thing a grade in the 80's would be good, but that's not necessarily so unless you know the details of the inspection. They need a better grading system, in my opinion.