Teacher Awarded £130,000 After Holiday Food Poisoning Causes Heart Attack

Food Poisoning In Sicily


A teacher from Ashford in Kent, who was forced to give up work after suffering a heart attack brought about by Salmonella food poisoning on holiday with his wife in Sicily, has been awarded £130,000.

Graham Morgan Smith (48), who now lives in Spain with his wife Deborah (54), booked their holiday to stay at the Hotel Antares in Sicily between 10th and 24th of August 2002 through UK based Tour Operator JMC.

During the first week of his holiday Mr Morgan Smith became ill with severe stomach cramps, and diarrhoea, symptoms which continued on his return to the UK. After developing severe chest pains two weeks after returning from holiday he was rushed to hospital where he suffered a heart attack.

Mr Morgan Smith found it difficult to return to work and the physical impact of his illness led to him having a nervous breakdown. He was unable to return to his job and took early retirement on the grounds of ill health after 20 years as a teacher.

Mr Morgan Smith said "Instead of enjoying a relaxing break with my family and returning feeling fit and refreshed my life has been turned upside down. I can not believe the devastating effect that this illness has had on my life."

"Before contracting Salmonella I was fighting fit and had completed the London Marathon. Now I am constantly worried about my health and I am really not the same person as I was when I went on holiday."

Irwin Mitchell Solicitors successfully settled the claims for compensation against JMC who had initially refused to pay compensation. Eventually, they were forced to pay £130,000 to Mr Morgan Smith after the matter was listed for trial.

Suki Chhokar, Partner in the Travel Law team at Irwin Mitchell Solicitors said "Mr Morgan Smith's illness has had a long term impact on his life and career, unfortunately Mr Morgan Smith is one of many people whose gastric illness results in long term symptoms which highlights the serious risk poor hygiene conditions can be to people's health.

"The hotel management and the Tour Operators clearly failed to ensure the health and safety standards at the hotel were maintained, sadly this has resulted in guests suffering serious illness."