"I won't mark something if I can't give them a reason behind it," he said.
Thirteen of the criteria are "critical in nature," meaning they pose imminent danger to the public. This includes things like storing food at safe temperatures, not allowing infected personnel near food, and enforcing proper hygiene practices.
If one of the 13 critical criteria is failed, even if the rest of the inspection is perfect, the entire inspection is failed. Action must be taken by the restaurant to correct the problem immediately.
A perfect score is 100, and 85 qualifies as passing. The majority of restaurants in Boyle County pass inspection. "Eighty-five percent of restaurants do a good job," Troutman said.
He has been doing restaurant inspections for 14 years. He has seen unsanitary activity and has heard food service horror stories that would turn even the strongest stomachs.
A local deli was unable to take apart its meat slicer, leading Troutman to believe it had never been cleaned. After finally getting it apart, Troutman found that to be the case. At another local restaurant, he found a "huge" rat.
A non-local restaurant once put degreaser on a customer's pancakes instead of syrup because the cleaning supplies were not properly labeled. The same lack of labeling caused an Ohio customer to get served detergent on French toast instead of powdered sugar.
"It goes back to training and management," Troutman said of the mistakes that can cause a food service facility to get shut down.
Although it's the obvious mistakes that catch the consumers' attention, common-sense practices make the biggest impact.
"The No. 1 silver bullet in public health is washing hands," Troutman said.
This type of neglect can cause an outbreak of norovirus, which is transmitted the fecal-oral route from contaminated water and food.
Twice a year health inspectors will "show up" at Boyle County's food service facilities and its food service/retail facilities to make sure the public's well-being isn't threatened by something like norovirus. They also do just retail facilities once a year.
Complimentary inspections recently were given to three Boyle County food service businesses, meaning the score would not count against them. But all three seemed to pass with flying colors.
Margie Divert, a cook with Danville High School, led Troutman through the back room of the cafeteria where dry foods are kept. Troutman checks with his flashlight for rodent droppings and insects, dented cans or open containers. He moves on to the freezers to check for leaks, temperatures and open containers.
Competitive about schools
Troutman makes sure everything that is not in its original container is labeled, that no water backflow is on the floors, that food holding machines and the dishwasher are at correct temperatures.
"Without the heat, it won't kill the germs," Troutman said as he checks each thermometer.
Troutman said schools are usually easy inspections and typically do well because they become competitive with one another about their scores. They do so well that Divert said it makes it difficult to go out to eat sometimes. "When I'm out and I see how people handle things, I just cringe," she said.
The health department also checks deli-style restaurants like Battlefield Marathon in Perryville.
"We don't serve anything we won't eat ourselves," said Virginia Ellis, a cook in the deli.
Troutman checks the food and freezer temperatures, the food preparation area for contaminants and makes sure raw meat is stored properly. In the retail side of Marathon, Troutman checks dates on medicine and baby food and makes sure no food product is touching the ground. He checks the fountain drink station and drink cooler. All the while, employees at the store are chatting him up.
"Most people around here know us," he said.