Common Law - The FindLaw Consumer Protection Law Blog

Romaine Lettuce Causes E.Coli Outbreak

Romaine lettuce is involved in yet another E. Coli outbreak, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issues its most broad warning to date. Do not eat romaine of any kind -- neither bagged nor head, nor boxed romaine mixed with other leafy greens. Not in a restaurant or at home. Regardless of expiration date, and regardless of whether you have already eaten parts and feel great. The warning also extends to our Canadian neighbors to the north.

Victims of Recent Outbreak

The recent outbreak has already sickened 32 people in eleven states, but thankfully there have been no deaths. It appears this strain of E.coli is linked to the same one that affected leafy greens in the Fall of 2017, but not the recent romaine E.coli outbreak in the Spring of 2018.

Can You Sue If You Get Sick?

If you have sustained damages stemming from E. coli poisoning, you can file a lawsuit. But in order to prevail, you will need to prove that your illness was caused by the contaminated food. In this case, since the FDA has identified the strain of E.coli causing this outbreak, if you can prove that you have this particular strain in your body, perhaps through a stool sample, you could prove causation, which is often the most difficult element of this lawsuit to establish.

Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome -- a Potentially Fatal Consequence of E.coli

In about five to ten percent of E.coli cases, patients can develop a very dangerous kidney diseased called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), from which people can die or became extremely sick. In 2013, a ten year old child developed HUS after becoming infected with E. coli from a petting zoo, and subsequently required a lifetime of dialysis and perhaps a kidney transplant in ten years. A jury awarded the child a $7.5 million verdict.

If you or someone you love has become sick from an E.coli outbreak, or any other form of food poisoning, such as Salmonella or Listeria, and has sustained damages, contact a local personal injury attorney. A legal adviser can listen to the facts of your case and give you guidance on the possibility of obtaining some form of financial relief.

Related Resources: