Salmonella Outbreak in South Carolina
A recent outbreak of Salmonella has been making headlines and causing grave concerns throughout the United States. Salmonella is not uncommon, and this recent outbreak is attributed to cucumbers that have been distributed to restaurants and retailers throughout the country. Illness due to Salmonella poisoning causes people to become violently ill, and can be potentially fatal. Unfortunately, as the number of outbreaks of salmonella has increased, so have the number of people who have suffered severe illness as the result of salmonella poisoning. Millions of people have been affected by salmonella outbreaks in the past ten years, as well as deaths connected to these outbreaks. Here’s what you need to know about salmonella poisoning, and how you can protect yourself and your loved ones from being exposed to this life threatening illness.
Recent Salmonella Outbreaks
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is currently investigating the most recent salmonella outbreak, caused by cucumbers imported from Mexico and distributed by the Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce Company. People began getting ill in the summer of 2015, and the cucumbers were recalled that September after outbreaks of Salmonella were reported in several states. As of early October 2015, 732 cases of Salmonella poisoning have been reported from 35 different states, including South Carolina. Officials estimate that there are likely many more cases that have so far gone unreported. Symptoms of Salmonella poisoningmay include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Digestive problems
- Stomach cramps
- Severe diarrhea and dehydration
Symptoms generally last four to seven days, and while some people may recover without treatment, others require medical attention and even hospitalization. People most at risk for suffering severe effects from Salmonella include children under five, adults over the age of 65, and people with weakened immune systems.
Manufacturer Faces Criminal Charges for Salmonella Outbreak
According to the CDC, Salmonella poisoning injures over 1.2 million people each year, causing 19,000 people to be hospitalized and resulting in an average of 450 deaths. Salmonella is a bacteria that can be treated with an antibiotic, but many people do not seek help until their symptoms are severe. A Salmonella outbreak due to contaminated peanut butter in 2007resulted in 714 reported injuries in 46 states and 9 deaths. Food safety advocates considered it a long awaited victory when the owner of the company that manufactured the peanut butter was charged for his part in the outbreak. While the owner has been charged with a federal felony and could end up with a life sentence, his brother and co-owner of the company faces 17 years and the plant manager faces five years in prison. All were implicated for their part of knowingly manufacturing the peanut butter from peanuts that contained salmonella. While it is the first time a food executive has been charged for playing a part in a salmonella outbreak, it could open the door for future cases, and sends a strong warning to distributors and manufacturers who knowingly put the public at risk.
Contact an Experienced South Carolina Personal Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one has been a victim of food poisoning or food contamination, contact Anastopoulo Law Firm. Our experienced South Carolina personal injury attorneys will fight to hold responsible parties accountable for putting you and your loved ones at risk, and help you get the compensation you deserve. Call now and arrange a free case evaluation!