E-COLI OUTBREAK: Man sickened by Applebee's salad hires attorney - KMSP-TV

E-COLI OUTBREAK: Man sickened by Applebee's salad hires attorney

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HUDSON, Wis. (KMSP) -

At least 13 people were sickened by an E. coli outbreak in Minnesota that was traced back to an Applebee's restaurant, and the attorney representing one says the case could have national implications.

"He likened it to being stabbed in the stomach on an ongoing basis," Fred Pritzker told Fox 9 News. "I mean, the cramping is just intense."

The Minneapolis lawyer representing the 22-year-old Hudson man who claims he got E. coli poisoning after eating an oriental chicken salad at the Applebee's off Hudson Road in Woodbury, and Pritzker suspects the culprit was likely a vegetable because of those who fell ill, only 7 ate at the restaurant.

"That's the product that's been implicated in some, but not all, of the cases," he explained. "Some people aren't associated with Applebee's. That's why we believe it was the vegetables that were distributed to multiple sources."

The vegetables in the salad include carrots, cabbage and greens. Now, Pritzker is waiting for answers on the exact cause of the contamination -- but he's already representing half a dozen Minnesotans who say they got sick between June 24 and June 27 from a strain of E. coli that left the Hudson man ill for weeks. Although a distributor hasn't been named yet, Pritzker said he believes the liability will fall up and down the line.

"Every level of the distribution chain is designed to prevent this from occurring," he said. "Something like E. coli is a really, really debilitating illness that, obviously, can cause lifelong injury and death."

Applebee's reps did not return calls for comment on Tuesday.

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