Suffering from food poisoning or foodborne illness can be extremely unpleasant. The symptoms of food poisoning can range from mild symptoms that go away in a couple of days or severe reactions that can result in hospitalizations. If your foodborne illness resulted from negligence in food handling or preparation, you might have a valid claim against the restaurant that served the food.
Because the damages in a food poisoning case can be substantial, it is in your best interest to consult an Ontario personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer can review the circumstances of your case to determine if you have a claim. The team of lawyers at Diamond and Diamond offer free consultations, so you have nothing to lose by seeking competent legal advice.
What is Food Poisoning?
A foodborne illness or food poisoning is a sickness caused by various bacteria, viruses, or parasites that can be found in food. Proper handling and preparation of food can usually prevent or reduce the risk of poisoning. Common symptoms of food poisoning include vomiting, fever, nausea, stomach cramps, diarrhea, and stomach pain. In some cases, foodborne illnesses can be life-threatening or result in permanent damage.
If you experience any signs of food poisoning, you need to seek immediate medical attention. You could be sick with one of the following illnesses that are related to contaminated food:
- Campylobacteriosis is the most common form of food poisoning caused by unpasteurized milk and undercooked meat and meat products.
- Botulism is caused by bacteria and can be fatal if not treated properly.
- Brucellosis is also caused by bacteria and can be caused by unpasteurized or contaminated dairy products and milk.
- coli Bacteria can cause a serious illness, depending on the type of bacteria. It is often associated with undercooked meat; however, you can also contract E. coli from other sources including raw vegetables and contaminated water. Once infected, a person can pass the infection to another person by mouth or hand contact.
- Listeriosis can be caused by contamination after processing of deli meats, hot dogs, and cold cuts, but it can also be caused by raw vegetables, uncooked meats, and unpasteurized dairy products.
- Salmonellosis is caused by eating food contaminated by drinking contaminated water or eating food contaminated by the feces of a person or animal.
For other forms of foodborne illnesses and the symptoms, you can visit the Ontario Ministry of Health’s website.
Steps to Take if You Have Contracted Food Poisoning at a Restaurant
Your first step is to seek immediate medical attention. As discussed above, some types of foodborne illnesses can be fatal. The sooner you are diagnosed and treated, the better chance you have of a full recovery. In addition, a medical diagnosis of a specific cause of foodborne illness can help you prove that your symptoms are not caused by the flu, stomach virus, or other condition with similar symptoms.
Do not throw any leftovers away. If you brought food home from the restaurant, secure it in an air-tight container and contact our office immediately. The food may be tested to prove that it is positive for specific bacteria associated with food poisoning. Testing positive for bacteria can help establish that the food was “defective” or contaminated.
In some cases, your illness could be caused by negligence, such as a sick restaurant employee or improper food handling and processing. An experienced lawyer can help you determine your course of action for filing a lawsuit against the restaurant and its employees for causing your illness.
Ontario Personal Injury Lawyers
If you believe a restaurant caused your illness, the team of lawyers at Diamond and Diamond can help. Call our 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now. We offer free consultations and case evaluations.