Georgia residents may be interested to learn that as many as 15,000 individuals accidentally ingest caustic materials, causing serious injuries, every year. Some of these accidents occur at restaurants after caustic materials are found in served drinks or even food. In fact, a patron was awarded $750,000 by an Atlantic County jury after he suffered chemical burns to his stomach and esophagus.
The patron reportedly suffered the burns after he was served a draft beer that had been tainted with a chemical cleaning agent. It appeared that a cleaning company hired by the restaurant to clean the beer lines used a harsh chemical to do the job. However, it reportedly failed to completely clear the lines. Further, it also appeared that the restaurant failed to use test strips to ensure that all holdover chemicals were gone. The patron ended up spending six days in the hospital.
Caustic chemicals can cause severe, life-altering or even life-threatening injuries. The burns they cause could damage the esophagus, mouth and tongue and result in severe bleeding. Other internal injuries could even be caused. These effects can result in long-term injuries, including stricture of the esophagus and even increasing the risk of esophageal cancer.
Restaurants and other businesses are required to ensure that the premises are safe for visitors and patrons. If a patron suffers a serious injury caused by improperly stored chemicals or a failure to ensure the safety of the food or drinks being served, they may have the grounds to file a premises liability lawsuit against the business. By filing a lawsuit, the patron could seek compensation for medical bills and for pain and suffering. An attorney may gather evidence to support the plaintiff’s claim.