In the end, 68 people were sickened in the 2011 Taco Bell Salmonella outbreak. There have certainly been others, both outbreaks (see below) and other ill people in this outbreak, but that is the number of confirmed Salmonella enteritidis illnesses in this iteration of Salmonella tacos.
According to the CDC, who left it to Oklahoma to name Taco Bell as the source of this outbreak,
[The 68 people were from] Texas (43), Oklahoma (16), Kansas (2), Iowa (1), Michigan (1), Missouri (1), Nebraska (1), New Mexico (1), Ohio (1), and Tennessee (1).
Among persons for whom information was available, illnesses began on or after October 13, 2011. Ill persons range in age from <1 to 79 years, and the median age was 25 years old. Fifty-four percent of patients were female. Thirty-one percent of patients were hospitalized. No deaths were reported.
Taco Bell was recently served with a complaint filed in a lawsuit on behalf of an Oklahoma resident sickened in the outbreak. Of course, Taco Bell has been sued before in Salmonella outbreaks. In 2010, simultaneous outbreaks of Salmonella Hartford and Salmonella Baildon sickened 155 people in multiple states. Marler Clark filed lawsuits in multiple states on behalf of victims of that outbreak as well. Incidentally, in the 2010 outbreak the CDC again declined to name Taco Bell as the source, instead referring to it as “Mexican restaurant Chain A.”
Taco Bell’s problems have not been limited to Salmonella either. In 2006, 78 people were sickened in northeastern states in a E. coli O157:H7 outbreak ultimately linked to contaminated lettuce served at Taco Bell. In 2000, 30 were sickened by hepatitis A in Florida, South Carolina, and Kentucky in an outbreak linked to Taco Bell’s green onions. And way back in the 1990s, Taco Bell ground beef sickened a bunch of kids with E. coli O157:H7, and hepatitis A sickened about 95 people at a Utah Taco Bell.