Indiana State Police with the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division are concerned about trucks on Indiana interstates that are delivering spoiled and contaminated food to area restaurants. They say the excessive heat is also making the problem worse.
"The chicken had been in excess of 70 and 80 degrees, and it was still on the road to be delivered," said Captain Wayne Andrews with the Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division.
He said many of the trucking companies do not care about proper refrigeration.
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In the last week, multiple trucks were stopped in Clinton County and members of ISP made shocking discoveries. Inside one truck, the cabbage had mold growing on it because of chicken juices and the beef, that had spoiled, had been re-cooled.
The Clinton County Health Department was called in, and approximately 2,000 pounds of food products were destroyed. The truck had made deliveries in Ohio and Frankfort, Ind., and it was heading to Lafayette area restaurants.
"It's going to Chinese restaurants or Mexican or Hispanic-type restaurants," said Captain Andrews.
Andrews gave Fox59 inspection reports that have recorded violators since July 1 when a new state law went into effect that gave the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division the authority to stop the hot trucks, look inside, ticket the driver and call in health officials.
"Unfortunately, it's happening more and more. We're seeing it quite frequently now that the temperatures are regularly 100 plus," he said.
He said most of the trucks are coming from Chicago-based food distribution companies, and members of the state police, who just received additional training, are catching a good percentage of the violators in the Lafayette area.
"Some of them, they've been put out of service, essentially closed down multiple times, and they pop back up under a new name," Andrews said of the companies that are continually receiving violations.