Biting into a meal at a restaurant and finding a hair can put you off your meal, but biting into food and finding metal, wood, or other objects could be much more dangerous. If you found inedible objects or dangerous items in food from a restaurant or in pre-packaged fresh or frozen food, you might be entitled to a lawsuit against the restaurant or food manufacturer. Especially if the object caused serious injuries after you bit into it or swallowed it, you could face medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras today if you found dangerous foreign objects in your food. Our Baltimore attorneys for injuries caused by objects in your food might be able to take your case and work to get you compensation for your injuries and the mental and emotional impact of the incident. For a free legal consultation, call us today at (410) 694-7291.
Injuries from Objects Found in Food in Baltimore
Food that comes from a manufacturer or a grocery store should be screened during the manufacturer’s production process, and the facilities where the food is cooked and assembled must pass health inspections. Similarly, kitchens at local restaurants and other eateries must also pass health inspections, so their kitchen staff should be properly trained in food safety and handling to prevent illness or injury.
When foreign objects make their way into food, the people eating it could face illness or injury. If uncooked food or cross-contaminated food makes its way into your meal, you could face illness from food poisoning, salmonella, E. coli, or other foodborne illnesses. If hairs get into your food, you likely will not become ill, but that can cause psychological distress. Additionally, pests, bugs, and dropping from pests could have both effects: these things could make you ill, and they could also be distressing to find in your food.
Items that are physically hard or entirely inedible can do more than simply gross you out – they can cause physical injury to your mouth and digestive tract. Toothpicks buried in the food or splintering wood off a kitchen tool or cutting board could cause serious injuries if you bite into it, potentially cutting your mouth and throat. Similarly, bits of metal or plastic from damaged or defective cookware, pot scrubbers, or kitchen appliances could hurt or damage your teeth, injure your throat, and cause further injury if digested. Your body cannot break down many of these items, and their irregular shape or sharp edges could cut you up inside and cause internal damage to your esophagus, stomach, intestines, and other internal organs if you unknowingly swallow these things. Other injuries could occur if rocks, broken glass, or other inedible items make their way into your food.
Suing for Illness and Injuries to the Mouth and Digestive Tract from Objects Found in Food in Baltimore
If you were injured or made ill from something in your food, you might be entitled to sue for the injuries and illness as well as the economic effects of the injury, such as medical bills and lost wages from time off work. You could also be entitled to noneconomic damages for pain and suffering from the potentially traumatic experience.
In a lawsuit against the food manufacturer or restaurant that prepared the food, you must prove that they did something negligent to allow your injury to occur. Negligence means that the defendant breached some duty that they owed you – usually the duty to act reasonably in how they prepare the food. This often means following standard food safety practices, such as washing their hands, wearing hairnets, and being reasonably prudent when watching what goes into the food. If something dangerous like chunks of wood or metal got into the food, it likely means they were not paying proper attention. The same is likely true if an unwanted pest or pathogen gets into the food, and such incidents might mean there are problems with the manufacturer or restaurant’s food storage practices. In some cases against manufacturers, the fact that there was a defect might be enough to satisfy this part of the lawsuit under “strict liability” rules.
Once you establish that the people who prepared the food made a mistake, you must show that this mistake injured you. In most cases, this will mean tracing the foodborne illness or dangerous object back to the food you ate from that producer or eatery. This can be difficult unless you have a sample of the uneaten food. If you were injured when you bit into the food, your eyewitness testimony and the testimony of anyone who witnessed you eating the dangerous food would be excellent proof of what happened, plus you will have the rest of the food and the dangerous item as solid evidence of the injury. If you swallowed something and did not notice the injury until later, it might be more difficult to prove that the injury came from that food, but our attorneys can help you narrow down where the food came from and have testing performed on any specimens to help prove which food injured you. X-rays and CT scans of foreign objects in your digestive tract can also be important evidence to help prove what happened and when the injury occurred.
Lastly, you will have to prove the damages you faced. In most cases where there were physical injuries or illness, the damages will include medical expenses and pain and suffering. In addition, if your injuries or illness kept you from work, damages for lost wages might be available. In cases where there was no physical injury but the experience caused mental and emotional stress, you might be entitled to damages for these harms, especially if they were caused by serious negligence or repeat mistakes by the restaurant.
Call Our Baltimore Lawyer for Injuries from Foreign Objects Found in Food
If you were injured because you bit into a piece of food that had a dangerous object in it, because you swallowed hidden items in a piece of food, or because you were given food that carried a foodborne illness, you might be entitled to sue the company or restaurant that prepared the food. For a free legal consultation on your potential case, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras today. Our Baltimore attorneys for injuries caused by objects in your food might be able to help you get the compensation you need. For your free legal consultation, call us at (410) 694-7291.