Food Poisoning

During the months of December 6 2015 through January 16, 2016, thirteen people were sickened from developing E. coli infections after eating at a popular pizza chain—Pizza Ranch. According to a statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the dough used to make desserts at the Pizza Ranch is the source of the sudden E. coli outbreak.

Infections were reported in numerous cities including Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Carolina, New Jersey, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, although Minnesota is the only state where multiple cases were reported. For instance, two children were hospitalized after developing a disease called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS)—a complication of an E. coli infection that often affects children under ten, causes seizure, stroke, kidney failure, and even death. Symptoms of E. coli typically develop within a week of exposure but can appear within twenty-four hours. They include fever, stomach cramps, diarrhea, and bloody stools.

This is not the first year dough contaminated with E. coli has been linked to a sudden outbreak. In 2009, a thirty-state E.coli outbreak linked to Nestle Tollhouse Cookie dough sickened approximately seventy people. The flour was the source of contamination in the dough. Thirty-four people were hospitalized, and ten people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).

Illinois Residents

According to 2010 estimates by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each year roughly forty-eight million people are sickened by a foodborne illness. Even worse, over 125,000 people require hospitalization and 3,000 die after consuming contaminated fruits, vegetables, meats, nuts, and processed foods in their homes or in restaurants.

The leading pathogenic causes of serious illness or death due to foodborne illness include:

  • Clostridium perfringens
  • E.coli
  • Hepatitis A
  • Listeria
  • Norovirus
  • Salmonella
Signs of Food Poisoning

The indications of a foodborne illness vary based on the source, but victims of foodborne illness may suffer from nausea, cramping, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. In more serious cases, these pathogens can lead to dehydration, weakness, muscle aches, or fatigue. Groups at highest risk for serious injuries associated with food poisoning include elderly people, infants, and people suffering from chronic illness. In some instances, such as the June 2011 E.coli outbreak, women were more prone to show symptoms.

Speak with an Experienced Lawyer

People who suffer serious personal injury, hospitalization, or even death due to food poisoning may be able to seek compensation for economic and noneconomic damages. If you are seeking legal advice regarding a foodborne illness claim, our Illinois food poisoning lawyers can help. We have experience representing clients in similar cases, including a four million settlement for three convention attendees who contracted salmonella poisoning that caused them to suffer crippling arthritic injuries.

Call us toll-free at 877-374-1417 or complete our online case evaluation form and one of our Chicago injury lawyers will call you back promptly. All initial consultations are free.