Five customers who ate gas station nachos at a convenience store in Walnut Grove, California, Valley Oak Food and Fuel, were poisoned by botulism, and one of them, Lavinia Kelly, has been hospitalized for three weeks in intensive care. Kelly became sick with a few hours after eating the nacho cheese sauce she bought at the Walnut Grove convenience store on April 21. The botulism has now progressed and has rendered her unable to open up her eyes on her own or speak. Four other suspected cases of possible botulism linked to eating the nacho cheese sauce are under investigation.
FOX News reported that Kelly, 33, who is a mother of three from Sacramento, according to her family members, has now become partially paralyzed after she ate the nacho cheese sauce contaminated with the bacteria-produced botulinum toxin. Kelly turned 33 on Tuesday, while still in the hospital.
Kelly is one of nine people who ate the nacho cheese sauce and came down with botulism poisoning or are suspected of having been poisoned by the botulism toxin. They are all still receiving medical treatment at area hospitals. Kelly’s family has filed a negligence lawsuit on her behalf.
CBS Philly reported that health officials in Sacramento have connected Kelly’s case of botulism poisoning and four other cases to Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station, located in the Walnut Grove suburb of Sacramento. Health officials are also investigating our other cases of botulism that could be linked to eating the contaminated nacho cheese sauce.
Lavinia Kelly’s sister, Theresa, according to WABC-TV, said that she got an emergency phone call from her sister after she ate the nacho cheese sauce from the gas station. Theresa Kelly said she picked up her phone when it rang, and she knew it was from her sister, but her sister was not able to “articulate a word.”
Lavinia Kelly bought Doritos from the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station and nacho cheese sauce from the gas station’s deli area. She drizzled the nacho cheese sauce on the chips and ate the snack, not realizing at the time that she was consuming food contaminated with botulism. The botulism attacked nerve endings in Kelly’s body and resulted in her partial paralysis and other symptoms.
Besides the symptoms of paralysis and breathing problems that botulism can cause, which are some of the symptoms that Kelly has experienced, botulism poisoning can sometimes be fatal. The Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station has had its business permit to sell drinks and food taken away by Sacramento health officials.
In an interview with the Sacramento Bee, Kelly’s partner, Ricky Torres, stated that he and members of Kelly’s family do not understand how and why Kelly could have gotten so ill “over a bag of chips and nacho cheese.” The Sacramento mother’s symptoms began, her relatives said, with feelings of tiredness and fatigue. Then, she experienced double vision, started to vomit, and developed breathing problems.
The attorney hired by Kelly’s family is Bruce Clark. Clark specializes in cases involving the safety of food. Clark stated that “human mistakes” are behind the creation of a perfect environment for the formation of “botulinum toxin.” Despite five confirmed cases of botulism and the possibility of four others, all resulting from consuming nacho cheese sauce sold at the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported cases of botulism are rare. In 2014, there were 161 cases of botulism in the United States, and just 15 of them “were food-borne.”
After eating nacho cheese sauce purchased from the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Walnut Grove, California, a suburb of Sacramento, there have been five confirmed cases of botulism poisoning and four other suspected cases. Lavinia Kelly, who is a mother of three, was one of the more serious cases reported, and she is now in intensive care at a Sacramento hospital, experiencing partial paralysis and breathing difficulties.
By John Samuels