89 now sick from Salmonella at Firefly restaurant in Vegas

In March 2012, Ottawa Public Health (OPH) investigated a foodborne illness outbreak of salmonellosis that included 85 cases, and caused 26 emergency room visits and six hospitalizations. Over a year later, OPH announced staff provided safe food handler training to food premises operators involved in the outbreak.

That’s not a report (and if there is one, I can’t find it).

This is a report:

On April 26, 2013, the Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD), Office of Epidemiology (OOE) received reports of gastrointestinal illness from eight independent groups of patrons of Firefly on Paradise or the fireflyadjacent affiliated restaurant Dragonfly on Paradise (Firefly) located at 3900 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, NV 89109. All patrons from these groups ate at the restaurant during April 21-24, 2013. Ill patrons reported symptoms of diarrhea and/or vomiting after they consumed food from Firefly restaurant, and many sought medical care for their illness. In response to these illness reports, the SNHD initiated an investigation.

On April 26, 2013, the SNHD performed an investigative inspection and closed Firefly and Dragonfly restaurants to minimize ongoing risk of illness.

Firefly restaurant uses two adjacent permitted kitchens, Firefly on Paradise (SNHD Permit Number PR0013375) and Dragonfly on Paradise (SNHD Permit

Number PR0015008), to prepare food for their customers. The inspection found that numerous conditions existed that could contribute to an outbreak of a foodborne disease and included: inadequate holding of food, inadequate cooling, improper handwashing, employee bare hand contact with ready to eat food, improper food storage practices, improper cleaning practices, and improper thawing of food.

The results of the inspection were 44 demerits for Firefly and 47 demerits for Dragonfly on Paradise. Both facilities were closed by SNHD for excessive demerits and for being associated with a large cluster of reports of illness (

Thirty samples of various foods were collected during the inspection and submitted to the SNPHL for possible testing to determine which food item(s) could have been the source of the illness.

Inspections were also conducted on April 29, 2013 of the two other Firefly restaurant outlets located in Clark County. Firefly Westside located at 9560 W. Sahara, Las Vegas received 30 demerits, and Firefly on Eastern located at 11261 S. Eastern received 6 demerits.

At least 86 patrons and 3 employees who consumed food and/or drinks at Firefly during April 21-25, 2013 contracted Salmonella infection.


1. Firefly should rectify faulty food storage equipment and practices to ensure that food will be maintained at proper temperatures.

2. The SNHD OOE staff will continue to collect information about customers who ate at Firefly during April 21-26, 2013 to establish illness occurrences among restaurant patrons, and to conduct a case-control study to identify specific food item(s), if any, were associated with illness.

3. The SNHD EH staff will continue to review Firefly’s food preparation methods to identify possible lapses in food safety procedures, and to require restaurant management to provide and implement a comprehensive food safety plan.

4. The SNHD OOE staff will continue to monitor the foodborne illness database for additional complaints of illness to determine whether the outbreak is limited to this establishment or has spread to the general community.

5. The SNPHL will perform pulsed field gel electrophoresis on the submitted specimens that were positive for Salmonella to determine if illnesses among patrons from the different groups were linked.

That report was published four days after the initial contacts regarding illnesses.

That’s a report.