The Burger King in Cortez is back in business after shutting down for a few days earlier this month because of a gas leak and equipment repairs.
According to Atmos Energy, around 4 p.m., Sept. 5 a customer reported a possible natural gas leak in the restaurant.
An inspection soon after by an Atmos technician revealed unsafe conditions on a cooking appliance and water boiler that had leaking gas connections, said Kurtis Paradisa, public affairs manager for Atmos Energy Corporation.
“Our technician was able to safely isolate both issues inside the restaurant,” he said.
The restaurant closed for three days to make repairs, according to Cortez and Montezuma County code officials. It re-opened on Sept. 10.
State and county regulations require a restaurant to have hot water in order to operate.
Atmos and the city required a licensed professional to install the new gas lines and replace the water boiler. The repaired units also had to pass a city fire code inspection.
City permits were required to replace the boiler, city officials said, and it took time for the restaurant to obtain a licensed plumber and gas technician to install a new water heater and repair the appliance gas lines.
The new water heater and gas lines passed the city fire code inspection, according to a report by Cortez Fire Code inspector Sean Canada. A green tag was given to the manager, and the restaurant resumed operations.
Less serious code issues were revealed by the inspection. A faulty hood must be repaired, and batteries need to be replaced in emergency lighting. A follow up inspection is scheduled for Sept. 20.
Efforts to contact Burger King representatives for comment on the matter were unsuccessful.
On Wednesday afternoon, the restaurant was bustling with staff preparing orders, a line at the drive-thru and customers eating inside. The manager said she could not comment on the recent closure.
According to the Montezuma County Assessor’s office, the Burger King in Cortez is owned by Fatemah Imami, of Greeley.