Dining Out with Food Allergies

Food allergies affect nearly fifteen million Americans and are quite common in many across the nation. According to the Food Allergy Research and Education coalition (FARE), a food allergy can be defined as a medical condition in which exposure to a food triggers a harmful immune response. The immune response called an allergic reaction occurs because the immune system attacks proteins in the food that are normally harmless. The proteins that trigger the reaction are called allergens. The eight most common food allergens include:

  • Milk
  • Egg
  • Peanut
  • Tree Nuts
  • Wheat
  • Soy
  • Fish
  • Crustacean Shellfish

Dining out while having a food allergy can be a risky undertaking. Lack of care and common cross-contamination in kitchens can cause an allergic reaction, which can range from a mild, itchy mouth to severe anaphylaxis which requires immediate medical treatment and/or hospitalization. However, lawmakers in Edison, New Jersey are in the process of potentially passing one of the strictest food allergy laws in the country. If approved, the law will help those with food allergies enjoy dining out without fear of a medical emergency.

The proposed legislation would require all restaurants and caterers to make every ingredient in a dish public and post the ingredient list on all menus. This way, diners will be able to know if an allergen is lurking in their dish. Some restauranteurs agree with the new proposal, as they will be able to ensure their clients’ safety and reduce the risk of medical emergencies in their facilities. However, others oppose the legislation, as they claim that overhauling their existing menus will be costly and time-consuming, as well as burdensome for the hungry customer to sift through.

Many New Jersey restaurant owners are also opposed to listing all the ingredients in each dish because of the need to disclose secret recipes that have been passed down from generations. Restauranteurs claim that those recipes are what gave rise to their businesses and what sets them apart from any other restaurant. If they are required to disclose the secret ingredients, how can they stop other chefs from stealing their recipes? Some allergists have proposed a solution, in which only the top eight allergens are listed, and not the entire ingredients list.

Food allergies can pose a severe danger and many symptoms can be a result of a restaurant employee’s negligence, such as failure to disclose all ingredients when asked or not taking the proper steps to ensure their clients are safe, even after the allergy is mentioned. If you or a loved one has been a victim of a severe allergic reaction and sustained serious injury or hospitalization because of the negligence of restaurant personnel, it is important to contact a New Jersey personal injury attorney, as you may be entitled to compensation. The attorneys at the Rinaldo Law Group are skilled personal injury lawyers, who will fight for the compensation you and your family are entitled to receive. Please contact us today at 908-352-2500 to schedule a free initial consultation.


Product Liability Lawsuit Against Arizona Beverage

People are injured and even killed by unsafe products every day, causing tens of millions in losses and damage every year. Flawed manufacturing, faulty and/or poorly designed products, and packaging malfunctions, among others, contribute to lawsuits filed under the premises of product liability. According to the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law, product liability refers to the liability of any or all parties along the manufacturing chain of any product for damage caused by that product. This includes the manufacturer of component parts, which is at the top of the chain, or an assembling manufacturer, the wholesaler, and the retail store owner, which are at the bottom of the chain.

New Jersey has had many product liability lawsuits brought in its courts over time. More recently, Samantha Corrado, a New Jersey resident, has filed a product liability lawsuit against the popular beverage company, Arizona, the Whitlock Packaging Corporation (now owned by Refresco), and CVS. This stems from an August 22, 2016 incident in which Corrado found a deceased rodent at the bottom of her can of iced tea and suffered injuries and distress from the event.

Corrado had purchased the Arizona beverage at a local CVS and immediately placed the can in her refrigerator to chill. Once it got cold, she drank the entirety of the contents inside the can, taking note afterward that it seemed abnormally heavy for an empty can. Upon glancing inside, she was greeted with the sight of the rodent. Corrado suffered gastrointestinal, psychiatric, and psychological distress and injuries because of the traumatic event.

Aside from product liability, this case has been brought on other counts, such as negligence and gross negligence. Negligence can be defined as the failure to use reasonable care, resulting in damage or injury to another. Gross negligence is a conscious and voluntary disregard of the need to use reasonable care, which is likely to cause foreseeable, grave injury or harm to persons, property, or both.

It has been deemed that the rodent either entered the can in the facility where the beverage was produced or the facility where the beverage was packaged. Regardless of where the rodent was picked up, both facilities should have strict hygiene procedures in place and should be monitoring the facilities for signs of rodents or insects. Since the companies failed to implement these procedures, they may potentially be charged with negligence and/or gross negligence.

If you or a loved one have been injured by a defective product because of the negligence of another, you may be entitled to significant compensation. It is important to contact an experienced New Jersey personal injury and product liability attorney that will help and guide you through the process. The attorneys at the Rinaldo Law Group are skilled personal injury lawyers, who will fight for the compensation you and your family are entitled to receive. Please contact us today at 908-352-2500 to schedule a free initial consultation.

Safety Concerns on New Jersey’s Railways

Using the railroad is a growing option for travel throughout the nation, and especially for New Jersey residents. Trains often provide an easier, cheaper, and more convenient option for those who are traveling to work or school, or for pleasure. According to the 2018 PATH Ridership Report distributed by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, in New Jersey alone from January 2018 to July 2018, there were a total of 22,354,148 rides taken on PATH trains. Continue reading “Safety Concerns on New Jersey’s Railways”

The Dangers Posed by Drowsy Driving

Drowsy driving has been a long-standing problem posing dangers to those who drive on our nation’s roadways. Falling asleep behind the wheel can have grave consequences, such as injuring yourself, property, or others, as well as causing the death of you or another individual. Continue reading “The Dangers Posed by Drowsy Driving”

New Jersey Bicycle Safety Regulations

The summer season is in full swing! Many individuals in urban areas around New Jersey are beginning to ditch their vehicles for a healthier and much cheaper option, especially with the price of gas on the rise. Bicycling is a nice option for transportation for people who would like to get in shape and save a little money along the way. Continue reading “New Jersey Bicycle Safety Regulations”

Wet Surfaces Alongside a Pool May Amount to an Open and Obvious Hazard

It is finally summer time!  This is the time of year to host a BBQ, pool party, or outdoor gathering.  However, unsafe conditions on the property can lead to an injured visitor resulting in a personal injury claim.  In New Jersey, a property owner must take the necessary steps to uncover and remove harmful or unsafe conditions. Continue reading “Wet Surfaces Alongside a Pool May Amount to an Open and Obvious Hazard”

Drive Responsibly to Avoid Summer Auto Accidents

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), from Memorial Day to Labor Day there is a 15 percent increase in fatal accidents, which is a result of increased traffic on the roadways.  In addition, the use of alcohol, distracted driving, and driver inexperience is a contributing factor in the majority of these fatal crashes. Continue reading “Drive Responsibly to Avoid Summer Auto Accidents”

Instances of Elder Abuse and Neglect May be Reduced as a Result of a New Jersey Bill

Elder abuse is a common problem throughout the United States.  According to the National Council on Aging (NCOA), elder abuse happens in the following ways:

  • Physical;
  • Sexual;
  • Psychological;
  • Verbal;
  • Neglect; and
  • Financial

Continue reading “Instances of Elder Abuse and Neglect May be Reduced as a Result of a New Jersey Bill”

Does Your Child Ride the Bus? Educate Your Child on School Bus Safety Today!

Each year, a large number of children are bussed to school and summer camp. While some children may be dropped off by a family member or loved one, the majority of children take the bus each day. Like any motor vehicle driver, bus drivers are expected to take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of each child, while operating the bus. The failure to take safety measures can result in serious or fatal consequences. Continue reading “Does Your Child Ride the Bus? Educate Your Child on School Bus Safety Today!”

Scaffolding Errors May Give Rise to a Personal Injury Claim

As a building boom continues throughout the tri-state area, construction sites continue to be flooded with scaffolding. While scaffolding may make a construction worker’s job easier, there are also certain precautions that need to be followed in order to mitigate the risk of injury while on a job site. With that being said, here are some safety tips:
Continue reading “Scaffolding Errors May Give Rise to a Personal Injury Claim”