‘Urgent Answers Vital’ As Newcastle Street Spice Event Is Linked To Salmonella

Lawyers Call For Full Investigation Following Illness Outbreak

08.03.2013

By Rob Dixon

Legal experts who represent thousands of victims of illness as a result of outbreaks in the UK and abroad have called on authorities in Newcastle, where the firm has an office, to quickly and thoroughly determine the cause of the illness outbreak linked to a street food festival in the city.

Newcastle City Council and the Health Protection Agency have confirmed that preliminary tests have revealed that four people suffered salmonella following the three-day Street Spice Event in the city’s Time Square.

Around 200 people in total have reportedly been struck by symptoms including vomiting and diarrhoea after also attending the food festival.

The council has confirmed that event organisers are co-operating with ongoing investigations in relation to the problems, while anyone with symptoms has been urged to contact the local authority’s Regulatory Services and Public Protection department.

Illness lawyers at law firm Irwin Mitchell have vast experience in representing people who have suffered serious health problems as a result of illness outbreaks to include food poisoning cases, including salmonella, in the UK and abroad. 

Notable domestic cases include securing a five-figure settlement for guests affected by problems at the Grand Hotel in Scarborough, as well as ongoing work on behalf of victims of major Legionnaires’ outbreaks in Edinburgh and Stoke-on-Trent last year.

Suki Chhokar, a Partner at Irwin Mitchell who has acted for thousands of victims of illness outbreaks, said: “News of these illness problems and the vast number of people believed to be affected is clearly a major cause for concern, with victims and their families undoubtedly wanting answers over what caused these issues.

“Through our work, we have seen first-hand how people who have suffered from salmonella can go on to suffer significant long-term health problems which can go on to impact on their personal and working lives.

“Because of this, the seriousness of this outbreak cannot be underestimated and we would urge local authorities, organisers and all businesses involved to carefully assess the source of the problems, as well as all of the steps taken to meet necessary food hygiene standards.

“As well as providing those affected with reassurances, the aim of investigations must also be to examine all aspects of safety and what measures could be taken to reduce the likelihood of such problems from emerging again at food festival events in the future.

“Events of this kind are hugely popular in cities and towns across the UK, so any lessons which can be learned that may protect the public who visit future festivals could prove hugely important.”

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