May 10, 2013
As part of the settlement of 61 Colorado Wrongful Death and personal injury lawsuits filed against a produce farm near Grenada, a federal judge released $3.8 million to be distributed among the victims.
The suits stem from an outbreak of Listeria at the farm that quickly spread and contaminated cantaloupes distributed across the nation. As a result, hundreds of people became violently ill and dozens died.
An investigation into the outbreak cited a lack of sterile conditions as a contributing factor. Furthermore, investigators found the farm did not have enough policies and procedures in place to ensure clean conditions. Several oversights in inspection processes were also noted.
Many of those who were sickened by the contaminated fruit filed suit against the farm, claiming the farm’s negligence was directly responsible for their conditions.
A story from The Pueblo Chieftain reported that the courts agreed with the victims and a federal judge released a portion of the award to the victims. The cash was from a trust held as part of the farm’s bankruptcy proceedings.
Some victims may seek more compensation from the farm’s sister company and a lab contracted to test the fruit for safety.
The Denver Personal Injury Lawyers at McDivitt Law Firm know the devastation caused by the outbreak. That’s why the firm hopes the decision will bring some closure to the victims and their families.