Rhode Island Salmonella Outbreak has First Fatality; Sickened At Least 39 Others

03/29/2011 // Greensboro, NC, USA // Personal Injury Lawyers News // Nicole Howley

Providence, RI — One person has died as a result of salmonella outbreak that already sickened dozens of people in Rhode Island. The exact source of the outbreak is still under investigation, but authorities reported that those who became sick said they had eaten a zeppole and/or baked good made at Johnston’s DeFusco’s Bakery, reported WPRI.

Just one day after the Rhode Island Health Department reported that at least 33 people were sickened as a result of the salmonella outbreak, the news of the first fatality was received.

By Tuesday afternoon, 39 people were affected and 24 of them were hospitalized with 21 being lab confirmed.

“An individual who died tested positive for salmonella associated with the outbreak,” said Health Department spokeswoman Annemarie Beardsworth to WPRI.

The victim was identified as a Providence County man in his 80s. He tested positive for the same strain of salmonella associated with the outbreak, but it was not confirmed that the bacteria was the cause of his death. It is also unknown if the man consumed any pastries from the bakery.

Family members of the victim reported that the man had underlying health conditions when he passed away on March 23.

Health inspectors arrived at DeFusco’s, who closed voluntarily, and found pastry cream stored at unhealthy temperatures and baked shells packed in unsanitary boxes, which could have been possibly exposed to contaminated raw egg.

Beginning Tuesday, March 29, the public can contact HEALTH’s Emergency Information Line for further information at 401-222-8022 which will be staffed Mon-Fri from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Legal News Reporter: Nicole Howley-Legal news for Rhode Island personal injury lawyers.

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