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Houston Injury Lawyer > Blog > Personal Injury > Listeria Outbreak in Texas Kills One Person & Sends Others to Hospital, Including Newborn

Listeria Outbreak in Texas Kills One Person & Sends Others to Hospital, Including Newborn

Listeria

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in December, multiple illnesses, infections, and hospitalizations, as well as at least one death in Texas was linked to a Listeria outbreak in connection with hard-boiled eggs packaged and distributed by Almark Foods. Symptoms experienced by those affected include balance loss, confusion, headaches, muscle aches, and fatigue, and serious pregnancy complications, including miscarriage, premature delivery, and newborn infections that are life-threatening. These health issues can manifest anywhere between one to four weeks after consuming the products.

As a result of the outbreak, four people were hospitalized, one died, and a newborn was infected while the mother was pregnant but did survive. The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are now investigating the issue, as the eggs were reportedly sold nationwide to both restaurants and stores. However, the products still have not been officially recalled.

Where Potential Negligence Is Relevant

There are at least two very important issues in outbreaks like these when it comes to ensuring that people are as safe as possible: One involves what types of conditions might give rise to outbreaks like this in the first place, and the other has to do with what actions food service operators and retailers should take in order to prevent additional infections.

According to available studies, Listeria is a type of bacteria that is found in feces, soil and water, and is found in connection with domestic fowl. It can also often survive commercial egg washing procedures and can also be in the water used to wash eggs. However, especially harsh handling and washing procedures can allow these microorganisms to persist in pores, causing shell eggs to become contaminated. It is also unlikely for large numbers of bacteria cells to survive cooking procedures unless the eggs were highly contaminated with the bacteria, indicating that there could very well have been an inordinate amount of the bacteria present in the facility and in connection with the eggs after they were cooked.

In addition, in terms of those who received these eggs ensuring that more individuals do not become sick, at a minimum, the CDC tells food service operators and retailers to: 

  • Avoid using any and all eggs produced at the Almark Foods Gainesville, Georgia facility, regardless of the dates on the packaging
  • Wash and sanitize any and all surfaces that may have come into contact with either the eggs or their packaging (including drawers and shelves in refrigerators and freezers where they were stored) because listeria spreads very easily to other surfaces and foods
  • Throw these products out, as pregnant women, newborns, people with weakened immune systems, and anyone age 65 or older are especially at risk for listeria infections

If they fail to take any of these actions, their negligence could lead to additional illnesses and deaths in connection with the outbreak.

Contact Our Experienced Texas Personal Injury Attorneys If You Have Questions

If you or a loved one has been harmed by the negligence of a manufacturer, store, restaurant, or any other facility, contact our experienced Houston personal injury attorneys at The West Law Office today to find out how we can help.

Resources:

jfoodprotection.org/doi/pdf/10.4315/0362-028X-55.11.862

cdc.gov/listeria/outbreaks/eggs-12-19/index.html

dfw.cbslocal.com/2019/12/19/texas-death-listeria-outbreak-packaged-hard-boiled-eggs/

https://www.houstonpersonalinjury.law/vaping-product-company-juul-faces-numerous-lawsuits-for-injuries-wrongful-death/

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