Dining out is meant to be a pleasurable experience, but if the restaurant or establishment of choice have not followed the correct health and safety procedures, you may end up getting more than you bargained for from your meal.
Unfortunately, food poisoning is fairly common in the United Kingdom and if you have been unfortunate enough to have experienced any of the symptoms of food poisoning which you can find some of further down this page, and you believe that the illness was not your fault, then you may be considering making a claim for compensation.
Making A Claim Relating To Food Poisoning
As with any other type of personal injury which was not your fault, you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation relating to your food poisoning. Simply contact and explain your case to a solicitor and they will be able to let you know whether they think that your case is viable.
If you want to make a claim, it is important that you keep as much evidence as you can which relates to the claim. Keep any documents from your GP, including receipts from any prescriptions. Involve the Environmental Health department in your claim if necessary. You should also try to keep hold of any restaurant, café or supermarket receipts which relate to the purchase of the food in question. You should also attempt to provide your solicitor with as much detail as possible about the meal in question.
Your solicitor will help you to take your claim to the party who you believe to have been responsible for your illness. They will then help you to enter into negotiations in the attempt to secure the compensation that they feel that you deserve.
What Causes Food Poisoning?
Food poisoning can be caused by the presence of certain types of bacteria in food. The presence of these bacteria may not necessarily affect the smell, taste or texture of the food that you are eating, so you may not realise that the food is not fit for consumption at the time when you are actually eating it. The more bad bacteria that is present in the food which you eat, the higher the risk of you developing food poisoning.
There are a lot of different ways to reduce the number of bacteria in food, and there are a lot of things which may increase the amount of bacteria in food. Food-related Health and Safety regulations in the United Kingdom are designed to minimise the levels of bacteria in food by encouraging food producers to take steps to prevent the spread of bacteria. However, if food producers fail to adhere to these regulations food can easily become contaminated. For example, if food is not properly stored after it has been cooked, bacteria can rapidly multiply so that the food becomes unsafe to eat.
Buffets are often discovered to be the cause of food poisoning, as food is allowed to sit out for a long time. In these circumstances, it is not uncommon for large groups of people who eat from the buffet to become sick due to the bacteria in food. If your friends or family become unwell after eating from the same food source as you, then it is highly likely that you all have food poisoning.
What Are The Main Symptoms Of Food Poisoning?
The symptoms of food poisoning can differ, depending on what bacteria was present in the infected food. Symptoms can begin to display themselves as early as 2 hours after the food was consumed, or as late as a week afterwards. The most common symptoms of food poisoning include nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach pains, dehydration, fever and exhaustion. In some cases, food poisoning can even result in organ failure, paralysis or death.
The symptoms of food poisoning are more likely to be more serious in young children, older people and those with a pre-existing medical condition. If you are concerned about any medical symptoms which you are experiencing, you should visit your doctor immediately. Your GP will be able to confirm whether your symptoms are a manifestation of food poisoning by taking a stool sample.