Recently, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that 92 people across 29 states have fallen ill due to consumption of raw chicken supposedly infected by Salmonella. While 21 people have been hospitalized, no one has died. The salmonella is resistant to numerous antibiotics typically used to treat such infections.
“The outbreak strain of Salmonella was found in live chickens and in many types of raw chicken products, indicating it might be widespread in the chicken industry,” said the CDC.
The CDC can not advise people on specific precautionary steps to avoid the contaminated chicken products because no common supplier has been found. Proper hand washing and thorough cooking of all chicken products are the best precautions as of now.
The symptoms of those infected with salmonella include diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps.
How are Food Poisoning Lawsuits Handled?
In Illinois, strict product liability, breach of warranty, and negligence laws can be used for food poisoning claims.
- Strict Product Liability: Under this legal theory, the food has “manufacturing” defects, i.e., the food was handled, prepared, cooked, and/or served in a faulty and unsafe manner. The victim has to prove that the product was certainly the source of his or her sickness. See e.g., Warren v. Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Chicago, 166 Ill. App. 3d 566 (1stDist. 1988).
- Breach of Warranty: Illinois law imposes certain minimum standards on products (known as implied warranties), and the contamination of the food product constitutes a violation of such a warranty. Greenwood v. John R. Thompson Company, 213 Ill.App. 371 (1919); Sweany and Maloney v. Walgreen Co., Inc., 323 Ill.App. 439, 55 N.E.2d 723 (1944).
- Negligence: If the claim under first two laws does not work out, the negligence law allows you to argue that the food manufacturer operated negligently in making the contaminated food product that eventually made you ill. Illinois law enforces a duty of every food manufacturer to exercise reasonable caution to protect consumers from becoming sick. Warren v. Coca–Cola Bottling Co. of Chicago, 166 Ill.App.3d 566, 572, 117 Ill.Dec. 30, 519 N.E.2d 1197 (1988).
In a food poisoning complaint, you must prove that the food was unsafe, the manufacturer was in charge of the contaminated food, and the food caused the your illness.
Contact a Food Poisoning Personal Injury Lawyer
If you or your child experienced food poisoning because of the negligence of a food manufacturer or restaurant, you have the right to pursue compensation for those damages through a personal injury claim. If you are experiencing an illness caused by food poisoning, call the food poisoning lawyers at Newland & Newland LLP at today at (847)797-8000, or a fill out our online contact form. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.
(image courtesy of Andrew Abbate)