Vancouver roadhouse reopens after 22 fell ill

SALMON CREEK, Wash. -- Billygan’s Roadhouse, a Vancouver restaurant that sickened 22 people, opened back up to patrons on Monday morning.

Clark County health officials lifted a closure order for the restaurant at 13200 N.E. Highway 99 in Salmon Creek after restaurant staff spent the weekend extensively cleaning.

The roadhouse was closed on Friday after it was confirmed that nearly two dozen patrons fell ill with gastroenteritis after eating there. County health officials suspected viral gastroenteritis because all patrons’ symptoms included nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Billygan’s staff closed the restaurant for at least 48 hours, so they could clean and sanitize all surfaces and equipment and discard potentially contaminated food.

The source of the contamination has not been specified.

"We believe transmission no longer threatens patrons and employees and we're pleased that service can resume," Clark County Health Officer Alan Melnick said in a statement released on Monday.

The roadhouse opened just after 11 a.m. Monday, said Don Strick, spokesman for Clark County Public Health.