Unfortunately this is a question that many holidaymakers will have to ask themselves, because the likelihood of getting food poisoning is increasing. According to a report published by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health in October 2010 there were 75,000 cases of food poisoning in 2009. We might expect to be safe in hotels, but as instances of the Norovirus have shown, staying in a hotel or a cruise liner is no guarantee of safety.
The symptoms of food poisoning vary but may include vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pains and tiredness. Sometimes the symptoms will clear up within a few days, but in other cases the effects may last longer. Food poisoning is not necessarily life-threatening, but for the very young, pregnant women and the elderly its consequences can be more serious and in some very rare cases, it may be fatal.
If food poisoning only lasts for a few days, most people will generally write off the incident as just one of the risks of travelling, but if the illness is more severe it can ruin a holiday, and possibly even lead to loss of earnings and incur medical expenses. If you have suffered from food poisoning at a hotel as a result of eating undercooked meat or food contaminated with parasites, viruses or bacteria you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation. At Accident Advice Helpline we can give you valuable advice, and help you with the process of making your claim with the help of our legal experts. We know that cases of food poisoning can be traumatic not only for the individual affected but also for their family, and so we treat all cases with sympathy.
The most common types of food poisoning caused by bacteria are E.coli, salmonella, botulism and campylobacter. These are serious conditions and often require hospitalisation. Being ill when you are on holiday is distressing enough, but having to receive hospital treatment, especially if it is abroad where medical treatment is not free can be worrying and expensive. If you have suffered from food poisoning and incurred additional costs, such as having to pay for medical treatment or missing travel connections, then you may also be entitled to claim for these expenses.
To make a claim you will need to keep a record of what happened. If you have to go into hospital you should tell the doctor what you suspect to be the cause of your illness. In the UK you can also contact the Environmental Health Department. If the outbreak has affected a number of individuals staying in the same hotel this will strengthen your case. In addition, you should keep restaurant or hotel receipts along with any letters that relate to the events and the names and addresses of any witnesses. If you wish to claim for additional expenses incurred as a result of your illness, such as travel, medicines and medical treatment, you should keep the receipts as evidence.
To discuss your claim with a member of Accident Advice Helpline’s expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.
Date Published: January 2, 2014
Author: David Brown