Food Poisoning Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed in Florida

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August 20th, 2009 ē

The family of a woman who died of a blood infection hours after eating a takeout meal, has filed a food poisoning lawsuit against a Florida Mexican food restaurant.

Courtney Rohn, 32, died at Homestead Hospital on January 5, a day after eating a beef chimichanga she ordered from El Toro Taco, a restaurant in downtown Homestead, Florida.

The food poisoning wrongful death lawsuit was filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court, alleging the restaurant was responsible for Rohnís sepsis death brought about by contaminated food prepared in unsanitary conditions. Claims are presented for negligence, strict liability and violations of the Florida Food Safety Act.

According to the complaint, Rohn got food for herself and her son on January 4, and awoke in the early morning hours of January 5 suffering from severe food poisoning symptoms. She was admitted to the emergency room of Homestead Hospital, where she then suffered cardiac arrest and died within three hours of her arrival.

The food poisoning death was allegedly caused by sepsis, a form of body-wide inflammation that results from the reaction to an infection. Symptoms can include high heart rate, a high respiratory rate, a high or low body temperature and elevated white blood cell count. Sepsis can cause organ damage and organ failure, and severe cases result in death about 20 to 35% of the time.

Following Rohnís death, state inspectors cited El Toro Taco with 53 sanitation and safety violations, saying that 35 of those violations were critical problems that could lead to food contamination, illness or environmental damage, according to a report in the Miami Herald. In May, the restaurant had to pay a $500 fine to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, which was the second time in a three-month period that the restaurant had been cited for violations.



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