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A KFC restaurant temporarily closed after a customer claimed to have spotted a rat race through chips is back open for ‘finger lickin’ good’ business under the watchful eye of pest control experts.

Bosses at the North Tyneside eatery say they have been working with rodent regulators to make sure there is no more pest “activity” and will be keeping a close eye on the premises over coming weeks.

ChronicleLive told how disgusted mum Sam Schofield said she saw a rat run through chips at the KFC restaurant as they were being served.

Shocked Sam claims she was waiting for her family’s food at the chain’s Wallsend branch when the long-tailed rodent made its appearance.

Darting through the chips and quickly disappearing from sight under the fryer , Sam says the rat caused a mass panic among staff and customers before the restaurant on High Street West was quickly closed.

Now KFC bosses say they are back open for business but will continue to visit the premises over the next month.

A KFC spokesperson said: “The restaurant was temporarily closed straight after this sighting whilst we looked into the problem, along with the Environmental Health Organisation.

“We’ve worked closely with pest control specialists, who confirmed that there’s no longer any activity in the restaurant, and they’ll continue to visit regularly over the next month.”

As previously reported Sam, 21, from Wallsend, said: “The rat literally ran across where they put the chips in a bag. The woman behind the counter started screaming, and everyone started shouting ‘there’s a rat’.

“Everyone behind the counter was just shocked as we all were. They were just stood there scared.

“I’m just happy I didn’t get given my food before, I would have ended up being sick.”

Refunds were issued to customers before all guests including Sam, partner James Butcher and newborn son Tommy, were ushered out as the restaurant closed its doors at about 6pm on October 4.

“You hear about rats carrying diseases, so why would you re-open that day?

“Even if it came from outside, you should not have a rat in a food restaurant.

“Now this has happened, I will never go back.”

The spokesman said: “KFC proactively informed Environmental Health on October 4 of the appropriate and timely actions they had taken to resolve the rat issue.

“The company closed the premise immediately, disposed of all food on display and called in a pest control contractor.

“A food safety officer visited the premise to confirm that there was no rat activity and that appropriate preventative measures had been taken.”

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