Parker Waichman LLP Product Liability Attorneys Accepting Clients Sickened by E. Coli Outbreak in Romaine Lettuce
E. Coli in Produce Linked to Major Illnesses and One Death in North America
Plaintiffs’ attorneys Parker Waichman LLP announce that they are accepting clients who ate romaine lettuce and fell ill. The outbreak lasted from October to December of 2017 and now appears to be under control. The United States Center for Disease Control (CDC) mostly concluded its investigation into claims that people fell ill and one person died after eating the infected lettuce. Most people made a full recovery, but others were not so lucky. The outbreak was nationwide. Therefore, you could have ingested the contaminated lettuce and fell ill without understanding the connection between the lettuce and your sickness.
The foodborne illness lawyers from Parker Waichman LLP want to hear from you if you ate lettuce or another food and fell violently ill. You and your family might be eligible to receive financial compensation for damages that arise from eating contaminated food like the romaine lettuce the CDC investigated. Parker Waichman’s team of lawyers who handle cases nationwide can help you recover financial compensation for your illness and help you get back on your feet financially after suffering from an e. Coli infection.
What is Food Poisoning?
Food poisoning is a severe problem in our country. According to FoodSafety.gov, 48 million people get sick from contaminated food each year and around 3,000 people die from food poisoning. The average turns out to be one out of every six Americans. The symptoms of food poisoning run the gamut from upset stomach, diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and dehydration, but can also lead to kidney failure. Some food poisoning cases are fatal. In the majority of instances, the symptoms typically last for about 5 to 7 days and are very uncomfortable but can be treated with anti-biotic prescription medication.
Most food poisoning occurs when a person consumes food infected with a particular bacteria or virus. The most common bacteria and viruses that lead to food poisoning are:
- E. Coli,
- Listeria, and
- Clostridium perfringens.
The Dangers of Food Poisoning
Food poisoning seems relatively benign. Food poisoning will manifest itself as a digestive problem and can make life hard for a day, but usually, the illness passes without much harm being done. However, there are numerous potential outcomes from food poisoning that can have lasting, long-term effects that can end or substantially and irrevocably alter a person’s life. Food poisoning is linked to long-term disabilities such as kidney failure, arthritis, as well as brain and nerve damage in addition to premature death.
The Romaine Lettuce E. Coli Outbreak
The CDC tracks public health crisis like food poisoning linked to a particular lot of food across the country. While reports suggest that the culprit in this most recent nationwide E. Coli event was romaine lettuce, the CDC will not officially state which product caused the contamination. The CDC did state that the problem stems from eating infected “leafy greens.” Extensive testing conducted by the CDC seems to suggest that the outbreak in the U.S. is nearly identical to a large number of people suffering from E. Coli food poisoning after eating infected romaine lettuce.
As part of its investigation, the CDC performed a genetic analysis of the E. Coli (which is shorthand for Escherichia Coli). The genetic testing showed that the strain of bacteria that sickened 17 and killed one in the U.S. alone was E. Coli 0157: H7 or STEC 0157: H7. STEC stands for “Shinga Toxin-Producing E. Coli.
To this point in their investigation, the CDC determined that 24 people contracted STEC from eating leafy greens. STEC infections typically take five days or so before symptoms appear. Accordingly, the CDC surveyed those who got sick to determine what they ate before the fell ill. About 56% of the sickened people surveyed reported that they ate romaine lettuce the week before getting sick. All stated that they ate some form of leafy green before they got ill. The CDC was not able to pinpoint the lettuce producer because each person who identified romaine lettuce consumption obtained the lettuce from different sources and therefore, the CDC could not collect any information that might lead them to the cause.
The diverse locations of the people who got STEC food poisoning further hampered the CDC’s ability to determine where and when the outbreak started. The outbreak appeared almost random based on the geographical location and number of people who fell sick:
- Four were sickened in California,
- Three got sick in Maryland,
- Two fell ill in Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and New Hampshire, and
One person became ill respectively, in:
- New York,
- New Jersey,
- Virginia, and
The CDC does know that the illnesses reported started on November 15, through December 12, 2017. Nine people were hospitalized during that time. Two people developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, which is a disease that interferes with normal kidney function. The one person who died from a STEC infection lived in California.
Coli is a naturally occurring bacterium. Every human and animal has E. Coli living in their stomach. Most strains of E. Coli are not only harmless but are beneficial to humans. Several strains of STEC exist and can make you as violently ill as STEC 0157: H7 can. Although death from a STEC infection can happen, usually the most severe symptom of a STEC infection is a hemolytic uremic syndrome or HUS. HUS causes damage to red blood cells and leads to kidney failure. Patients suffering from HUS might need dialysis and blood transfusions to reverse the damage caused by the infection. Fortunately, HUS can run its course in a week to ten days, with most people making a full recovery.
What Can Our Lawyers Do for You?
A food poisoning lawyer from Parker Waichman LLP can help you recover financial damages for your losses. Every entity that touched the contaminated food is potentially liable to you for financial compensation. The burden rests on the entity within that chain to prove that they did not cause the problem. Parker Waichman’s experienced products liability lawyers have vast experience pursuing each link in the distribution chain vigorously to make sure their clients have the best chance to recover damages.
Is There a Time Limit to When I Can File a Claim for Damages?
Every state in the U.S. has a statute of limitations. The law of limitations prevents you from filing a legal claim for damages if the time specified in the law has elapsed. In most states, the statute of limitations for personal injuries is three (3) years. However, each state is different and different factors could lengthen or shorten the amount of time you have to file. Your Parker Waichman products liability attorneys will guide you regarding the applicable statute of limitations and will make every effort to protect your rights.
Turn to Parker Waichman LLP for Aggressive Representation for Your Damages
The foodborne illness lawyers with Parker Waichman have successfully handled hundreds, if not thousands of claims for damages. You and your family can rely on their vast experience and demonstrated a track record of success to help you pursue damages for your E. Coli food poisoning.
Call Parker Waichman LLP today at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529) or use our contact web form for your free, no-obligation evaluation. Remember, there is never a fee unless we recover financial compensation for you. We have won numerous awards and have recovered over $2 billion in damages for our clients. Put our experience and reputation in your corner. Call or click today.
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