Public Health Lawyers Concerned By Latest E. Coli Outbreak

38 People Reportedly Suffering With E. Coli Bug Potentially Linked To Pre-Packaged Salad


Andrew Robinson, Press Officer | 0113 218 6463

Expert public health lawyers at Irwin Mitchell, who have vast experience helping thousands of people affected by illness outbreaks in the UK and abroad, have expressed concerns as 38 people have reportedly contracted a form of E. coli.

Tests conducted by Public Health England (PHE) have shown that 33 victims have been exposed to pre-packaged salad and that 19 of them had purchased the product at the same supermarket chain.

The majority of the cases in England have occurred in Cheshire, Anglia and Merseyside and are believed to have contracted E. coli between 29 July and 12 August 2015.

Cases of E. coli 0157, which can lead to serious health complications for those affected, were identified in August, with more cases expected to be confirmed following tests. The outbreak comes less than a year after an E. coli outbreak in November 2014, which affected 85 people across the UK.

Samples are now being collected from supermarket outlets visited by those who have fallen ill, as well as the distributor and supply farms to determine the exact source of the illness.

Jatinder Paul, an public health solicitor at Irwin Mitchell, who is currently representing a number of those affected by an E. coli outbreak linked to an outlet of Robinson’s Butchers in the north-east, which has left one person hospitalised, said:

Expert Opinion
“This is the latest in a long line of illness outbreaks in the UK in recent months and it is concerning that the number of people affected may increase in the coming days.

“We are currently representing hundreds of people across the country who have suffered problems related to public health outbreaks in the UK, including almost 300 individuals affected by a norovirus outbreak at a Toby Carvery restaurant in Exeter, and know from experience just how serious these infections can be, with many victims suffering a debilitating long term impact.

“It is vital that Public Heath England and the local environmental health authorities continue to work swiftly to pinpoint the source of the latest E. coli outbreak.

“It is clearly in the public’s interest to identify the cause as soon as possible, so that further steps can be taken to mitigate the risk of further cases and to ensure that lessons can be learned to help to prevent similar outbreaks in the future.”
Jatinder Paul, Associate

Public health authorities in Scotland have also launched an investigation after a schoolgirl in Ayrshire was confirmed to be infected with E. coli 0157 to identify any possible sources.