A national fast food chain has paid $175,000 to settle claims that its food caused a young woman E. coli poisoning.
The law suit was brought by law firm of Swartz Culleton, which contended that the E coli, a food borne bacterium, came from fast food that the woman had eaten at the restaurant chain two weeks earlier.
The law suit hit an early road block when genetic testing showed that the strain of E. coli found in the woman did not match the strain of E. coli that had affected other customers of the same restaurant chain. A further hurdle was the fact that the woman did not become sick until two weeks after eating the chain’s food. The incubation period for E. coli is usually 2 to 3 days.
The Swartz Culleton lawyers were able to overcome these defenses using a detailed survey of everything the woman had eaten in the weeks before she was sick, and evidence that the fast food chain was the only place at which she ate where other diners had also reported E. coli symptoms.
The woman made a full recovery and later gave birth to a healthy baby boy.