Fuego Tortilla Grill Salmonella Outbreak

Fuego Tortilla Grill Salmonella Outbreak

The Fuego’s Tortilla Grill Restaurant in College Station decided to voluntarily close its doors on Friday, after the Brazos County Health Department’s (BCHD) investigation into a number of Salmonella cases involving the restaurant that have occurred since last September. In all, while no deaths have been reported, officials have confirmed 30 Salmonella cases, with 26 of those affecting either Brazos County residents or those who have visited the area.

As the investigation continued, the BCHD found Fuego Tortilla Grill to be “statistically significant,” so they had DSHS Laboratory take environmental samples from the restaurant on May 13, 2014. DSHS reported their results today, and found that four of the 36 samples they took tested positive for Salmonella. The source of specific exposure has not yet been identified, but they are looking at a number of possibilities, including a tainted food supply, infected employees or unsafe food handling procedures.

The General Manager of Fuego’s, David Girela, released a statement, saying the restaurant would be closed all night for what was described as “deep cleaning,” but would reopen no later than Saturday at11 a.m. They plan to make a number of changes in their cooking procedures, including the use of liquid eggs in place of fresh, whole eggs, which the Health Department believes could be the contamination source.

BCHD officials are continuing their investigation, and they have said they’re working closely with restaurant management to identify the exact source of the bacteria, and to develop strategies for preventing a repeat occurrence. They describe management as “cooperative.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Salmonella infection symptoms vary widely, and can include headache, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea and possibly vomiting. For most otherwise healthy adults, the illness lasts between three days and a week, and the vast majority of those affected recover without hospitalization. Unfortunately, in some cases, people can suffer severe dehydration from severe diarrhea, and should head to the emergency room. In extreme cases, those infected can suffer from swelling in their eyes or urinary tract, or serious kidney problems. The most commonly found sources for Salmonella are raw or undercooked dairy products, meat and eggs.

Anyone with any of the above symptoms should definitely drink a lot of water and rest, and they should see a doctor as soon as possible.  If you have questions and would like to speak to experienced food poisoning lawyers, call Hill Law Firm today for a free consultation.

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