herald

Saturday 21 October 2017

More than 50 ill following food poisoning outbreak

O'Dwyers pub in north Dublin
O'Dwyers pub in north Dublin

An investigation is under way after more than 50 people, including four children, became ill after an outbreak of salmonella in north Dublin.

The HSE has confirmed that it is investigating an outbreak of food poisoning that has affected "multiple groups".

It said it is liaising with the Food Safety Authority of Ireland and said an Outbreak Control Team had been formed.

The Food Safety Authority previously placed a closure order on the kitchen of O'Dwyer's Pub in Strand Road, Portmarnock.

Kitchen

The probe is focusing on cat- ering company Flanreil Food Services, which was operating out of the kitchen of the pub, but the source and cause of the outbreak has not yet been identified.

A spokeswoman for the HSE said yesterday it is aware of more than 50 people who became ill from a number of family parties supplied by a north Dublin food business on May 13 and 14.

As of last night, five people had been admitted to hospital and 16 cases of salmonella had been confirmed. The HSE said the first cases of food poisoning were reported on May 18.

"The investigation is focused on [a north Dublin food] business. A closure order was served on the food business on Friday, May 19," the spokeswoman said.

She said the investigation was continuing and included further examination of the food business operation and the food served.

It is also assessing information from those who fell ill and other guests who ate food.

"Members of the public should contact their GP if they have any concerns," the spokeswoman said.

"People who think they may be ill as a result of this outbreak may also contact the HSE's Environmental Health Service or Department of Public Health in Dublin to assist in the investigation of this outbreak."

Peter Coyle, a former Labour Party councillor for Portmarnock, said he believed the food at the centre of the outbreak was sent to Swords and not consumed on site.

A sign on the doors of the pub restaurant yesterday said it had been closed due to unforeseen circumstances.

Bacteria

The investigation comes after Dublin mother Sandra Murphy-O'Brien died from suspected food poisoning after attending a function celebrating a First Communion at the centre of the investigation.

Ms Murphy-O'Brien, a fitness fanatic aged in her 50s, was found dead at her home. She is understood not to have had any underlying health conditions at the time.

Salmonella bacteria live in the guts of many farm animals and can affect meat, eggs, poultry and milk.

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