Renee Cherry Sues Virgin Australia Over Unborn Baby's Food Poisoning

Posted May 23rd 2011 09:00 AM

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A mother filed a claim in Australia's Supreme Court on Friday that states her unborn son suffered food poisoning on a Virgin Australia flight in May 2009, according to the Australian.

Renee Cherry has taken legal action for her son, Zayd Fokeera, who was born roughly two months after Cherry ate a chicken roll on a Brisbane to Melbourne flight on May 23, 2009.

Cherry claims she contracted listeria poisoning as a result of eating a tainted chicken roll. Her claim states that the "listeria bacteria poisoned the blood of the plaintiff's mother and the plaintiff and caused him to suffer injury."


Cherry's claim states that her son was "injured" with a bacterial infection, listeria poisoning, gastro-intestinal injury, developmental delay, and anxiety.

Through her lawyers, Cherry admitted it was "very distressing" to learn she had listeria poisoning while pregnant, adding "it's every mother's worst nightmare."

Cherry is suing for medical expenses, loss of prospective income and earning capacity and damages.

In August 2009, Virgin Australia released a statement concerning a listeria outbreak from May to June 2009, saying "the affected chicken wraps may have been supplied to customers on flights along the east coast of Australia and to New Zealand and Bali." Virgin said in the statement the listeria can be harmful to pregnant women.



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Linda tt

rover thanks for setting kel straight on his/her uneducated comments

July 02 2011 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
roverdale45

The ignorance in this thread is UNBELIEVABLE! Are any of you idiots who are blaming the mother even BOTHERING to read the sound scientific data the nurses and informed people here are TELLING you? Let me spell it out in simple sentences for you then:

Listeria causes PERMANENT DAMAGE AND/OR DEATH in the fetus. Think POLIO and you're starting to catch on to how serious and severe this infection is for a fetus.

Chicken is NOT on the list of foods pregnant women are warned about which *might* be contaminated with Listeria; and further, not all doctors WARN pregnant women about Listeria---I know, because I had to ask my OB/GYN why she wasn't mentioning Listeria as a danger during my "early pregnancy evaluation educational warnings," and her reply was "Oh, it's so rare we don't feel the need to warn patients, we think it might scare them." Scare them? Hell yes, it SHOULD---and the crime in that is that "rare" doesn't mean "Never"---when the consequences of getting the infection are so severe, a pregnant woman SHOULD be warned of how to TRY to avoid it.

As to why was she eating this, again, it's NOT on the cautionary list, and too, there's a level of public trust that foods served in restaurants and airlines are tested, handled properly, and free of dangerous contamination. The airline *is* responsible for the food they serve. However, if I were the airline, I would in turn be suing my catering contractor---along with instituting some type of food testing for batch deliveries.

"Kei," if it were YOUR formerly-healthy baby made disabled for life (and it having somehow lived through something that could have killed it), all because someone in the public trust allowed tainted food to be served that caused the disability, somehow I think you might grow an ounce of empathy. Then again, given the lack of empathy and sheer ignorance you've shown, your infection-disabled baby would probably end up in a dumpster.

June 29 2011 at 9:47 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
Kel

Is this lunatic out her frakking mind? What's next, the toilet paper she used was scented and caused an asthma attack? Why do pregnant women always want to blame someone else for their choices? If she was that concerned about her health, why was she flying? Why was she eating something she didn't prepare? Why didn't she stay in bed wrapped in pillows drinking filtered water, eating organic food prepared in a sterile kitchen? I can only hope the Supreme Court has the send to tell her to "get a grip"!

June 11 2011 at 4:24 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Kel's comment
CeCe

You, my friend, are a moron. -_-

July 12 2011 at 8:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
maryweinstein

I'm not sure how much the airline would be at fault for the Listeria poisoning, since it obtained the food from another source , and even storing it properly (refrigerating it) wouldn't stop the growth of the Listeria in the food (Listeria will grow at temperatures of 4 degrees Celsius). If Renee contracted listeriosis from her food, ( this bacteria causes sepsis and infection of the amniotic fluid in pregnant women) and this caused her baby to be born prematurely and infected as well, especially with permanent sequelae as a result of this infection, I couldn't blame her for suing, but I believe whoever manufactured and packaged the chicken roll should be at fault, not the airline. Quite often listeriosis in pregnant women causes the death of both the mother and/or the baby.

And Renee is in no way contributory to this tragedy. She was apparently in good health, within the airline's guidelines for travel during pregnancy, and had every right to expect that food she obtained from the airline
for consumption during the trip be untainted. And food tainted with LIsteria ( most often it's cheese, or other dairy products, but can be processed meat as well) doesn't look, smell, change consistency or in any other way clue the consumer that it's contaminated, so there is no way for someone to know that until they get very ill.

June 06 2011 at 11:22 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
lklcm

To blame a mother -to -be for flying and traveling is a gross case of envy-to blame a mother -to- be for eating a tainted sandwich is a classic case of I wish I weren't such a miserable loser who knows nothing about pregnancy-care of a child or sanity in the general sense-Judi-what happened in your poor miserable life?Maybe you should sue your parents for breeding you and I hope you have not brought other human beings into your pathetic world-yours and all of you who blame this woman-walk in her shoes for a day and then post your assanine comments.Shame on you all and god help any children you are raising-hopefully they will see and understand what you challenged people don't.

June 03 2011 at 9:57 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
chachadynamite

I agree that she should be compensated, but the airline didn't make the food from scratch, she should be suing the company that catered the flight, not the airline. I feel bad for her because our world is so sue-crazy that when someone like her does come along with a logical claim they get thrown in with the rest of the bunch who sue at the drop of a hat, that said, some of the comments here are wildly inappropriate.

May 30 2011 at 5:23 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
johnnieonenote

Well he got that last description of himself right!

May 30 2011 at 2:45 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
miranda04m

I believe that this mother has every right in this case to bring light to what has happened and seek compensation. God forbid it ever happen to you or anyone you love. Having a child with any serious disability is heartbreaking and a lifelong challenge for the child and family. Therefore, I would have to offer my sincere condolences and support to the mother. It also seems that Virgin accepts responsibility given the facts of the situation and will most likely offer a reasonable financial settlement to aid in the care of the child. Despite some of the cruel comments posted by others, this is not a joking matter, I think any thoughtful person would agree that is ignorant. In fact, there are many famous comedians and celebrities who support numerous causes regarding special needs: Autism Awareness, the Special Olympics etc. The only thing I find funny with some people trying to make a joke out of a mother's heartbreak, and an innocent child's lifelong disability, is the lack of humor and the lame attempt to make it so.

May 24 2011 at 1:41 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jmarcia4

As an intensive care nursery nurse for 30 years, let me educate some of you who are blaming the mother. Listeria is a deadly bacteria known to cause brain damage and/or death to a newborn if eaten by mom during pregnancy. Yes, pregnant moms know not to eat certain foods during pregnancy, and are warned against certain fish (mercury), alcohol, soft cheeses (known to carry listeria),etc. But I've never heard a warning against chicken sandwiches. So, the mom was not eating a forbidden food. And Virgin admitted the outbreak. As for pregnant women flying, it's considered safe until about 34 weeks.( 40 weeks is term)
The baby most likely suffered severe and permanant brain damage from the infection, and will require a lifetime of special care. So, don't go blaming mom, she has lost the healthy baby she was carrying, and now has a severely handicapped child. Would you blame the mom of a child who contracted e coli from a fast food hamburger? The same logic applies to this situation!

May 24 2011 at 12:45 PM Report abuse +9 rate up rate down Reply
finklehoffer

Oh come on who's ever on a flight long enough to die of starvation ?? forget the food & bring on some drinks and female flight attendents in very short skirts please !!!!!!

May 24 2011 at 5:46 AM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to finklehoffer's comment
Antoinette

Dumb ass they won't let you bring no food or drinks on the plane!!!!

September 22 2011 at 3:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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