As of May 9, 2018, there are six Canadian cases of E. coli O157 that are genetically similar to the U.S. outbreak linked to romaine lettuce coming from the Yuma growing region in the U.S. The six Canadian illnesses are reported in four provinces: British Columbia (1), Alberta (1), Saskatchewan (2), and Ontario (2). Individuals became sick between late March and mid-April 2018. One of the Canadian cases was hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported in Canada. Individuals who became ill were between 13 and 68 years of age. The majority of cases (67%) were female.
In the Canadian investigation, among the six cases, most of the individuals who became sick reported having eaten romaine lettuce at home, or in prepared salads purchased at grocery stores, restaurants and fast food chains, before their illnesses occurred. Two Canadians did report traveling to the U.S. before getting sick and eating romaine lettuce while they were there.
If it is determined that contaminated romaine lettuce is in the Canadian market, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will take the necessary steps to protect the public, including recalling the product as required. Currently there are no Food Recall Warnings associated with this outbreak.
As of May 15 2018, there are 172 cases in 32 states: Alaska (8), Arizona (8), California (39), Colorado (3), Connecticut (2), Florida (1), Georgia (4), Idaho (11), Illinois (2), Iowa (1), Kentucky (1), Louisiana (1), Massachusetts (3), Michigan (5), Minnesota (12), Mississippi (1), Missouri (1), Montana (8), Nebraska (1), New Jersey (8), New York (5), North Dakota (2), Ohio (6), Oregon (1), Pennsylvania (21), South Dakota (1), Tennessee (3), Texas (1), Utah (1), Virginia (1), Washington (7), and Wisconsin (3).
Ill people range in age from 1 to 88 years, with a median age of 29. Sixty-five percent of ill people are female. Of 157 people with information available, 75 (48%) have been hospitalized, including 20 people who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure. One death was reported from California.
The last shipments of romaine lettuce from the Yuma growing region were harvested on April 16, 2018, and the harvest season is over. It is unlikely that any romaine lettuce from the Yuma growing region is still available in people’s homes, stores, or restaurants due to its 21-day shelf life. The most recent illnesses reported to CDC started when romaine lettuce from the Yuma growing region was likely still available in stores, restaurants, and in peoples’ homes.
Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $650 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner,Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.
To date, Marler Clark has filed six lawsuits in relation to the nationwide E. coli O157:H7 outbreak: one in New Jersey against Panera, one in Pennsylvania against Freshway, two in Arizona against Red Lobster, one in California against Papa Murphy’s, and one in Georgia against Texas Roadhouse. Marler Clark currently represents 86 people sickened in the outbreak, including 11 who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), acute kidney failure.
If you or a family member became ill with an E. coli infection or HUS after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark E. coli attorneys for a free case evaluation.