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Diners Who Allegedly Contracted Norovirus at Chipotle Want $74,000 Each
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Summary: Chipotle has been sued by two customers who said they were food poisoned in Virginia earlier this month. 

Chipotle is known for its massive burritos, but unfortunately, it’s also known for making people sick (and not in the regular gassy-beans-kinda-way.) While the chain appeared to have bounced back from its food poisoning outbreak of 2015-2016, a Norovirus attack in Virginia has put a dollop of bad tidings back onto the restaurant chain.

  
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According to Eater, the Norovirus outbreak has brought on a renewed scrutiny from the federal government as well as a new batch of lawsuits. Two patrons have already filed a suit against the chain, and they are both seeking $74,000.

Two weeks ago, dozens of customers became sick after eating at a Virginia Chipotle. Chipotle CEO Steve Ells said that the outbreak was caused by one employee, and the chain shut down the restaurant temporarily to sanitize all surfaces.

“We took swift action and made it clear to the entire company that we have a zero-tolerance policy for not following these protocols,” Ells said. “Compliance with our procedures is non-negotiable and a condition of their employment.”

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After the alleged outbreak, almost 100 people described their illness on the website iwaspoisoned.com, according to Reuters. The crowdsourcing website is a forum for customers to share their experiences getting food poisoning at various locations.

The two plaintiffs who sued Chipotle are Kyle Hogan and Patrick Moore, who said they ate at a Chipotle in Sterling, Virginia and later sought medical treatment after contracting Norovirus. Both men are seeking $74,000 plus interest for “pain and suffering, mental anguish, physical impairment, physical disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life, medical and pharmaceutical expenses, travel and travel-related expenses, emotional distress, lost wages, lost earning capacity, punitive and/or exemplary damages and attorneys’ fees.”



Hogan and Moore are represented by Ron Simon & Associates and The Warren Firm.

Ron Simon & Associates have represented other Chipotle customers who were food poisoned over the past two years.

“Through these lawsuits we will make sure that Chipotle learns to put the safety of its customers first,” attorney Ron Simon said.

While dealing with these new lawsuits, which will most likely not be the last, Chipotle is also facing a new probe. According to Reuters, U.S. federal prosecutors have served the chain a new subpoena in order to learn more about the Norovirus outbreak.

A spokesperson for Chipotle said that the Virginia store has been sanitized and the staff retrained. Additionally, they will enforce a “zero tolerance” policy for employees who fail to follow food safety rules.

Norovirus is spread through fecal matter. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it is the leading cause of illness from contaminated food as workers who do not wash their hands spread the disease to consumers.

What do you think of Chipotle? Let us know in the comments below.



 

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