Members of College Softball Team Sickened after Eating at Livermore In-N-Out Burger
In-N-Out Burger in Livermore chose to temporarily close one of its locations after several customers reported they were sickened by the food. According to news reports, health officials suspect this could’ve been a norovirus outbreak, but have not yet confirmed that. Officials said the diners who were affected were traveling together as part of a college softball team and complained of acute gastroenteritis and flu-like symptoms after eating that the restaurant on May 6, 2017.
Health officials said the members of the team reported severe symptoms including vomiting and diarrhea. The restaurant shut down on May 9 to conduct a full investigation and notified the Alameda County Department of Environmental Health, as required by the law. The health department worked with the restaurant’s staff to conduct inspection after which they approved its reopening. The restaurant did pass its two most recent inspections, but was cited for a food safety violation during a routine check last December, health department records show.
Illnesses Caused By Norovirus
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), norovirus is a contagious virus, which can be transmitted through an infected person, contaminated food or water or by touching contaminated surfaces. The virus causes the stomach or intestines or both to get inflamed.
This could result in stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. Norovirus illness could have serious consequences especially for the elderly and the young. Norovirus is also the most common cause of acute gastroenteritis in the United States. Each year, it causes 19 to 21 million illnesses and contributes to anywhere between 56,000 and 71,000 hospitalizations and 570 to 800 deaths.
Fault and Liability
Norovirus illnesses most commonly occur because of lack of hygiene especially when it comes to handling or preparing food and food storage. Restaurant owners and operators have a duty of care to their customers to provide food that has been prepared in a clean and safe environment.
If you have become ill as a result of eating at a restaurant, it is important that you get medical attention right away. Save your restaurant receipts. Report your illness to your local health department. Contact an experienced California food poisoning lawyer who will help you secure compensation for damages such as medical expenses, loss of pay, hospitalization, diagnostic tests, pain and suffering and emotional distress.