Grenier Law Group attorneys are currently investigating the multi-state E. coli outbreak reportedly linked to Costco chicken salad. As of November 25, 2015, at least 19 people have been affected with the outbreak strain of Shiga toxin-producing STEC O157:H7 over 7 states. Most of these have been reported in Western states, but there has been at least one reported case from Virginia. Date of onset has been reported as ranging from October 6, 2015, to November 3, 2015. So far, two people have been reported as developing hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), the most serious complication of E. coli. So far, the evidence has suggested that Costco’s chicken salad is a likely source of the outbreak, but the specific ingredient has not yet been identified.
On November 20, 2015, Costco reported to public health officials that the company had removed all remaining rotisserie chicken salad from all stores in the United States and stopped further production of the product until further notice.
Symptoms of an E. coli infection include severe diarrhea (potentially bloody), fever, loss of appetite/nausea, and abdominal cramps. While some people recover without treatment, diarrhea, dehydration, and potential complications including hemolytic uremic syndrome can develop so individuals should seek medical attention if they are experiencing these symptoms.
Grenier Law Group’s experienced food injury attorneys are currently investigating this outbreak. Many state laws impose strict liability upon a seller of a product that causes injury to another or his property due to a defect in the design of the product which makes the product unreasonably dangerous. In such cases, it is not necessary for the plaintiff to show that the defendant acted unreasonably or negligently; rather, the focus is upon the product itself. A product is unreasonably dangerous when it is dangerous to an extent beyond which would be contemplated by the ordinary consumer who purchases the product. In some cases, infected food can give rise to strict liability. In the past, GLG’s attorneys have represented victims of food related illness in courts around the country and in Washington DC. Most recently, in 2014, GLG successfully brought a case involving Trichinella-infected pork sold at another DC eatery that caused life threatening illness. GLG also has experience representing those infected with HUS.