Officials confirm restaurant source of Fayetteville salmonella outbreak


At least 100 cases of illness were reported.

Cumberland County Health officials said in May that as many as 1,000 people who ate the restaurant could have been exposed to the illness.

According to a report released by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, public health officials could not implicate a specific food item as the cause, citing the likelihood of cross-contamination of food products and restaurant surfaces.

Health officials told ABC11 in May that they found a faulty kitchen dishwasher was not adequately sanitizing plates and glassware.

Officials also found that some food service employees continued to work while ill and that may have contributed to the contamination in the restaurant.

» Click here to read the full health department report «

Meanwhile, at least nine lawsuits are pending, and attorneys are expecting to hear from more people who were sick.

"Our three clients are patrons that ate, and it was all on May 9," said attorney Steven Lawrence. "The common date that they ate, which seems to be the most common date among all the people."

Fayetteville-based Anderson, Johnson, Lawrence and Butler is among two local law firms taking on the Holiday Inn Bordeax.

The firm was contacted by Seattle-based Marler Clark, a firm specializing in these food mishap cases, to serve as local counsel.

Their clients are seeking monetary compensation for the illness they dealt with after eating at the hotel's All-American Bar and Grill.

"There's certainly a lot of pain and discomfort initially because any type of gastric neuritis, you're going to have a lot of pain involved in that," said Lawrence.

Another law firm told ABC11 that some of their clients are still undergoing medical treatment from the outbreak.

Lawrence expects his clients will be able to settle out court.

"If I was looking at it from the defense side, that would be a plus," said Lawrence. "That I could come in and try to get all the matters resolved at one time."

The other firm involved, the Hatley Law firm, says they have five clients, with a sixth filing now.

Hotel management issed a press release after the health department's report was released.

» Click here to read the press release. (.pdf) «

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