Over the last few days we have been retained by dozens of Las Vegas residents sickened by Salmonella after eating a Firefly during April 21-24.  We filed the first Salmonella Lawsuit on Friday.  Download Complaint.

The people who have called are likely counted as part of the 86 that the Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) has counted thus far.  However, what is becoming clear as well is that this outbreak will likely grow much larger as people from all over the United States (and the world) are counted.  I have spoken to a crew of Marine Corp pilots who were taken down by Salmonella.  The same can be said of a family of a hospitalized boy in Boston, and others from Minnesota, California, Florida, and even Canada.  We can expect, unfortunately, that this outbreak will be large and international in scope.

On April 26, 2013, the SNHD, Office of Epidemiology (OOE) received reports of Salmonella gastrointestinal illness from eight independent groups of patrons of Firefly on Paradise or the adjacent affiliated restaurant Dragonfly on Paradise (Firefly) located at 3900 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, NV 89109. All patrons from these groups ate at the restaurant during April 21-24, 2013. Ill patrons reported symptoms of diarrhea and/or vomiting after they consumed food from Firefly restaurant, and many sought medical care for their illness. In response to these illness reports, the SNHD initiated an investigation.  To date 86 patrons and 3 Firefly employees are likely victims of Salmonellosis.  Download Interim Report.

The number of likely ill are concerning as is the likely cause of the outbreak.  On April 26, 2013, the SNHD performed an investigative inspection and closed Firefly and Dragonfly restaurants to minimize ongoing risk of illness. The SNHD OOE, Environmental Health (EH) and Southern Nevada Public Health Laboratory (SNPHL) have been collaborating on the investigation and response to this outbreak. The Nevada State Health Division was also apprised of the outbreak investigation.  Download Inspection Report.  The Inspection Report found:

Critical Violations – Hand washing inadequate, Food not wholesome, spoiled, contaminated or adulterated, food not properly cooled and food not at proper temperatures.

Major Violations – Food not protected from potential contamination from chemicals, Kitchenware and food contact surfaces not properly washed, Not effective pest control, Inadequate hot and cold holding equipment, Not accurate thermometers, Grade card not posted conspicuously.

The total violations above accounted for 44 demerits, which warranted closure due to “imminent health hazard.”

“Imminent health hazard” – that says it all.