A group of individuals who were affected by E. coli after visiting a petting farm are launching a group legal action for personal injury compensation.
Godstone Farm in Surrey was at the centre of the E. coli outbreak in September last year. The strain of the disease was the particularly nasty O157 which is potentially fatal and can cause lasting health problems. 93 people were infected during the outbreak before it was contained.
An independent report has been conducted by George Griffin, a Professor of infectious diseases at The University of London. The report criticises the way the outbreak was handled by the farm and government agencies. The farm was not closed till a month after the first case was reported. Professor Griffin stated that had the Health Protection Agency and local health inspectors acted sooner then the outbreak could have been minimised. The farm was also criticised for not doing enough to stop visitors coming into contact with animal waste.
A group legal action is being made on behalf of the 28 children who contracted the disease while visiting the farm. Unfortunately some children suffered kidney failure and renal damage by the E. coli infection. They argue that the farm was negligent and responsible for the children’s illness. If this argument is successfully proved, they will be able to claim personal injury compensation from Godstone Farm’s insurers.