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Lawsuit Filed Against American Airlines After Passenger Dies After Meal

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The family of Othon Cortes of Miami, Florida, has filed a lawsuit against AA and Sky Chefs claiming he died from food poisoning after eating an in-flight meal.

The lawsuit claims the chicken dinner Cortes ate was contaminated with the potentially deadly Clostridium perfingens bacteria. The complaint says that Cortes was suffering severe stomach pains and a “clear outward manifestation of severe physical illness,” after the AA flight landed at JFK Airport in New York.

Cortes made the connecting flight to Miami, and he began to suffer nausea and shortness of breath. The flight diverted to Norfolk, VA, after Cortes suffered ‘a cardiac event.” He was pronounced dead shortly after landing.

According to the lawsuit, AA and Sky Chefs failed to properly maintain or prepare the food. The suit also accuses AA of being “negligent in allowing Othon to board the domestic flight, failing to provide medical attention and waiting to long to (opt for) an emergency landing.”

USA Today reported that the FDA information page on the bacteria says Clostridium perfingens is common, but – rarely – can be fatal. The regional medical director of the American Region for International SOS, Robert Quigley, told MSNBC that most food poisoning symptoms take 12 to 24 hours to appear, “although certain types of very virulent bacteria do manifest within six hours.” He said heart attacks – an apparent reference to the “cardiac event,” occur on flights more frequently than most might guess. disclaimer: This article: Lawsuit Filed Against American Airlines After Passenger Dies After Meal was posted on Monday, December 5th, 2011 at 8:32 pm at and is filed under Food Poisoning Lawsuits.

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