Food Poisoning Closes Another Massachusetts Restaurant

After a Massachusetts restaurant's food poisoning outbreak, friends eat a meal which has been safely prepared.
After a Massachusetts restaurant's food poisoning outbreak, friends eat a meal which has been safely prepared.

A food poisoning outbreak has closed a Massachusetts restaurant in the middle of the summer season, raising concerns for diners.

A North Reading restaurant has been closed indefinitely after 39 diners filed complaints related to a salmonella outbreak. The source may be the antipasto salad, but the local board of health is still investigating.

The North Reading Board of Health shutdown Kitty’s Restaurant on Main Street on July 3. The board investigated the food poisoning, which may have initially occurred on June 23. After a thorough cleaning, the restaurant was allowed to re-open – though not for long. The restaurant has been closed again following a new report, this time from a June 25th visit.

According to a Boston 25 News report, the board’s investigation is focused on antipasto salad served at the restaurant. Nine complaints have been linked to salmonella poisoning on June 23. The other 30 cases from June 23 have not been confirmed yet. After the latest complaint from June 25th, the board has recommended testing for 46 workers and another full cleaning.

What is Salmonella Food Poisoning?

Salmonella poisoning is one of the most common types of food poisoning in the United States, according to The onset of symptoms can come within 12 hours or may take up to three days. Possible symptoms include nausea, stomach cramping, fever, abdominal cramping and vomiting. Fever and chills are also common. Expect symptoms to last 4-7 days.

Salmonella is not usually fatal in adults, according to the Mayo Clinic. With weakened immune systems, the elderly, young children and pregnant women are at risk for complications. Individuals who suffer from AIDS, malaria and other illnesses are also at a heightened risk, as are people taking anti-rejection drugs after organ transplants.

Causes of Salmonella Poisoning

There are many sources for salmonella poisoning. One is when eggs, meat and poultry are not properly cooked, then consumed. This can happen during processing and distribution before the food reaches consumers and businesses such as restaurants.

Failure to wash one’s hands can also lead to poisoning. If a restaurant worker doesn’t wash their hands, then handles food, they can pass along Salmonella contamination.

It can also be passed along by touch from pets and animals. Always wash your hands after contact with any animal, but most of all with birds and reptiles. You can be exposed in certain countries overseas. Do your research before international travel.

How to Report a Food Poisoning Case in Massachusetts

When suffering food poisoning symptoms after eating at a restaurant, always contact your community’s local board of health. The board will notify the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Do the same if you consumed food at a local business.

These venues likely served other people on the same day you visited. The contamination may not be an isolated incident and needs to be investigated to protect others.

Can I File a Lawsuit in Massachusetts if I Suffer Food Poisoning?

Every food poisoning case is unique and should be explored with an experienced Boston food poisoning lawyer who can advise you of your legal rights. Not everyone exposed to food poisoning suffers illness, but others are left with long-term complications. Contacting a lawyer is an important step to preserve your legal rights.

Free Legal Consultation in Massachusetts Food Poisoning Cases

With over 100 years combined experience, the Boston personal injury lawyers at Breakstone, White & Gluck specialize in handling food poisoning cases. These cases are complex and must be investigated promptly.

For a free legal consultation, contact us at 800-379-1244 or 617-723-7676 or use our contact form.

Salmonella Outbreak in Rhode Island Now Linked to Death

A salmonella outbreak in Rhode Island now includes at least twenty-one people with severe illness, and one death, according to reports from public health officials in that state. Health officials are investigating another eighteen illnesses to see if they are tied to the salmonella outbreak.

Officials are focused on zeppole and other pastries which were made by Defusco’s bakery in Johnston, Rhode Island. According to news reports, investigators found pastry shells stored in boxes contaminated with raw eggs, and also found that custard used as filling was not being properly chilled.

Investigators have identified the particular strain of salmonella, known as Salmonella heidelberg, as the suspected organism responsible for the illnesses. They are now trying to determine whether the death of the elderly Rhode Island resident was caused by that particular strain.

The investigation into the food poisoning outbreak began on March 25, 2011, after nearly a dozen elderly residents of a Warwick nursing home became sick after eating pastries from Defusco’s bakery. Since March 12, two dozen victims have required hospitalization for severe illness.

Salmonellosis, the disease caused by salmonella infection or salmonella toxins, leads to diarrhea, fever, vomiting and abdominal cramps. Most people recover without treatment, but in the elderly, in infants, or people with compromised immune systems, the disease can be very severe, requiring hospital admission for rehydration and antibiotic treatment to prevent the spread of infection. Severe infections can lead to reactive arthritis and death.

Prevention of salmonella illnesses is straightforward. Food which may contain the bacteria, such as chicken or pork, must be prepared properly to kill the organism and destroy any salmonella toxin. Eggs and milk, and their products, must be properly prepared, handled, and refrigerated. Infections can also occur from contact with reptiles, pet rodents, and tainted fruits and vegetables. Proper hygiene–washing hands before and after handling food–is also a common sense method of reducing the likelihood of food poisoning.

Each year over 140,000 people suffer from salmonella poisoning in the U.S. and dozens die from the illness.

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