The family of a toddler hospitalized with salmonella infection is suing the alleged seller and slaughterhouse of the whole roasted hog.
The family of a Thurston County toddler hospitalized with an infection caused by salmonella tied to a whole roasted hog is suing the alleged seller and slaughterhouse.
Naylyn Guiles, 19 months, from Lacey, attended a pig-roast party June 28 with her family and was fed pieces of meat during the event, according to a complaint filed Friday in Pierce County Superior Court.
The next day, the child fell ill and was taken to Mary Bridge Urgent Care in Olympia. She was later admitted to Providence St. Peter Hospital with a high fever, diarrhea, chills and other symptoms.
A stool test confirmed the toddler was infected with a rare strain of Salmonella I 4, 5, 12:i:-, which has been linked to an outbreak that has sickened at least 134 people in 10 Washington counties.
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Fifteen people have been hospitalized, according to state health officials. The illnesses occurred between April and July.
“Our hearts go out to those sickened in this outbreak,” said a statement from Texas food-safety lawyer Ron Simon, whose firm filed the suit, the first associated with the outbreak. “Through this lawsuit and others, we will make sure that Kapowsin Meats and its retailers institute proper safety measures to make sure this never happens again.”
The complaint seeks damages from Stewart’s Meats in Yelm, Pierce County, which allegedly sold the whole hog, and Kapowsin Meats in Graham, which slaughtered it.
Kapowsin Meats on Thursday recalled more than 116,000 pounds of whole hogs tied to the outbreak after federal and state health officials detected the outbreak strain of salmonella in environmental samples from the meatpacking plant. Officials with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service previously issued a public-health alert about the meat.
State health officials have said Kapowsin may not be the original or only source of the outbreak. They are conducting investigations at farms in Washington and Montana to determine at what point the bacteria were introduced into the food chain.
John Anderson, who runs Kapowsin, said he has sanitized the meatpacking plant, which remains open. Butch Carlson, owner of Stewart’s Meats, declined to comment Friday because of the pending lawsuit.
Salmonella infections cause symptoms including fever, chills, diarrhea and vomiting. Healthy people usually recover quickly, but the infections can cause serious illness in young children, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems.
Consumers can help stop salmonella infections by keeping pork and other meats separate; washing hands, cutting boards and utensils that come in contact with meat in hot, soapy water; and by cooking pork to 145 degrees Fahrenheit.