A health reporter for Channel 9 News in Oklahoma City was nearly killed by food poisoning after she ate undercooked ground beef at a barbecue. Initial symptoms included terrible heartburn, which progressed to diarrhea, vomiting and disorientation. She was rushed to the hospital, where blood tests showed that her liver and kidneys had shut down — and she was immediately rushed to the hospital’s intensive care unit.
Elements of a food poisoning claim
Under Oklahoma law, a person injured by food poisoning must show:
- Contamination: They were harmed by a foodborne illness.
- Causation: The contaminated food caused the food poisoning.
- Damages: They suffered demonstrable harm from the contamination.
In addition, an injured party may be able to argue that the individual or entity who supplied the food breached a warranty to provide suitable products because they provided food that was unreasonably dangerous.
How can you show that you were harmed by a foodborne pathogen?
Plaintiffs seeking to collect damages based on food poisoning need to show the specific source of the contaminated food. This often requires scientific testing of food samples and collection of evidence that shows that others suffered similar injuries. An experienced food poisoning lawyer can help gather and organize this evidence to support your case for damages.
Who you can sue
Potential defendants in food-poisoning lawsuits include:
- Food producers, such as farms or slaughterhouses
- Markets and other food suppliers, such as farmers markets
- Private individuals
Common food poisoning symptoms
Common food poisoning symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. In extreme cases, food poisoning can lead to hospitalization, catastrophic injury or death. This is particularly true in cases involving children, senior citizens or individuals with compromised immune systems. Given these risks, victims of food poisoning should call a doctor immediately.
Plaintiffs seeking to obtain damages for food poisoning are likely to face various obstacles including vanishing evidence, the need to litigate against corporate entities with teams of lawyers and attempts by insurance companies to minimize coverage scope. Therefore, it is important to have a strong advocate who can present your claims for maximum damages. The Oklahoma City food poisoning attorneys at Cunningham & Mears, PC are committed to helping victims of food poisoning receive the damages they deserve.