Red fluid (not catsup) in chicken sandwich triggers suit against Rally's

Ann Knef Aug. 22, 2007, 4:13pm

Tunya Ayers of Cahokia claims she continues to suffer significant emotional distress two years since eating half of a chicken sandwich contaminated with a fast food worker's blood.

Ayers, 34, filed suit against Altes LLC, doing business as Rally's Restaurant, and John Doe Employee in St. Clair County Circuit Court Aug. 17, claiming the restaurant breached its duty to provide safe, clean and uncontaminated food products to its patrons.

She bought the sandwich Sept. 6, 2005, at the drive through window of Rally's located at 1600 Camp Jackson Rd. in Cahokia.

"Plaintiff began consuming the sandwich after the vehicle departed from the restaurant," the complaint states.

"Plaintiff consumed over half of her sandwich when she noticed red fluid on the sandwich. This fluid did not appear to be consistent with catsup or other condiments typically found on sandwiches. Upon examination, plaintiff believed this fluid to be blood."

Ayers is represented by Rodney H. Holmes of the Cochran Firm in St. Louis.

She returned to the restaurant and was informed by the manager that "John Doe Employee" had cut his hand and was not to engage in food preparation that day, the complaint states.

"John Doe Employee had assisted in food preparation due to an increase in customer volume and as a result blood from his hand was transferred to plaintiff's sandwich," the suit states.

Ayers claims the employee had a duty to wear gloves during food preparation.

"Plaintiff purchased and consumed a chicken sandwich from defendant's restaurant that was contaminated with human blood," the suit states. "This result ordinarily would not have occurred absent negligence by the defendants."

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