Cases of food poisoning reach the millions around the country each year. According to the CDC’s Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FOODNet), there are 48 million cases of food poisoning in the US every year. Of these cases, 3,000 are fatal.
Most food poisoning cases are caused by Salmonella, with FOODNet documenting roughly 1.2 million cases each year leading to around 450 deaths. However, for each actual diagnosis reported, the CDC estimates that another 25 or 30 go undiagnosed.
These staggering statistics lead many to wonder how food poisoning can be so common in spite of the regulations that have been put in place.
One suggestion for why the rates of food poisoning continue to occur is that the food we’re consuming in restaurants is becoming more complicated, with ingredients coming from various parts of the country and around the world. In addition, more instances of food poisoning than ever are being reported—due largely in part to the use of social media.
Social media has the capability of spreading information about foodborne illness easily throughout a community and beyond.
Should I Sue?
So, you’ve eaten at a restaurant and now you’re experiencing severe abdominal cramps, fever and diarrhea. All signs point to food poisoning. The question is, can you sue the restaurant for causing your illness? Filing a personal injury lawsuit is within your rights; however, even if you’re absolutely sure the restaurant in question led to your illness, it can be difficult to prove.
Given that the incubation period for salmonella is 12 to 48 hours, you could have easily eaten other food during the time before you began experiencing symptoms. Furthermore, you may be suffering side effects from a different illness, such as the flu. Your chances of proving fault don’t get any easier if you have leftovers in your fridge because the restaurant’s lawyers will be quick to claim neglect on your part for not properly refrigerating the food after leaving the restaurant.
These claims can easily go out the window, however, if there are others who became ill as well. In this situation, you and the others will have a much stronger case against the restaurant. These are the types of lawsuits that have been on the rise recently.
Food poisoning can either be an unpleasant number of hours slumped on your bathroom floor or a serious health scare that puts you or a loved one in the hospital. In either case, if you feel that a foodservice company is a fault, contact The Babcock Law Firm of Denver for a free consultation. We can help you decide the best course of action.
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