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Lunch Chain Dig Temporarily Closes Williamsburg Outpost After Staffer Gets Sick

The fast-casual chain closed the restaurant Thursday after a staffer reported flu-like symptoms but has reopened today after a deep clean and a whole new crew

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A plate of food including orange sweet potatoes, green kale, and an open menu placed in front of it
Dig’s Williamsburg location temporarily closed yesterday after a staffer reported flu-like symptoms
Dig [Official]

Dig — the fast-casual lunch chain formerly known as Dig Inn — shut down its Williamsburg outpost on Thursday after a staffer reported having flu-like symptoms after coming in contact with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19.

The chain closed the Williamsburg location at 1 p.m. on Thursday, shortly after finding out that the employee had called in sick and about the employee’s potential exposure, a spokesperson for the chain tells Eater. Dig then called all the customers that had existing orders at the time, and canceled and refunded their orders, the spokesperson says.

An email from Dig Food Group CEO Adam Eskin went out at 2:30 p.m. that afternoon and was sent to all customers who had recently visited the Williamsburg outpost. In the email, Eskin writes that a third-party service cleaned and sanitized the restaurant on Thursday, and a completely new restaurant team is working at the Williamsburg location as of this morning.

All the workers who were previously at the Williamsburg location have been placed on mandatory paid quarantine, Eskin writes, but it’s not yet clear how long these employees are expected to stay isolated. The Williamsburg location resumed normal business hours as of Friday morning. Eskin also pointed to a series of health and safety protocols Dig locations have take since the state-mandated shutdown in March including hourly sanitization of all surfaces, and glove-changing for staffers every half hour.

Besides Dig food, the chain is delivering produce boxes and pantry staples.

Dig is not the first fast-food chain to have to contend with a store closure due to the novel coronavirus. Panda Express temporarily closed all 11 of its NYC locations at the end of March due to the spread of the virus in the city. Grocery stores in NYC have had to contend with this issue much more so than restaurants so far. Trader Joe’s has closed and reopened outposts on the Upper West Side, Soho, and near Union Square after staffers there tested positive for COVID-19.

Earlier this month, data showed that service workers are among the most vulnerable New Yorkers for the virus.

At Dig, some of the eight locations of the chain have been temporarily closed since the state-mandated shutdown went into effect on March 16. A spokesperson for the chain didn’t specify which locations, but it appears that the the Midtown East location is one of the temporarily closed spots. The locations that are open, however, have expanded their delivery zones to make up for the closures.