Food poison scare as residents rushed to hospital
Food poison scare as residents rushed to hospital

Probe into alleged food poison scare as adults and children rushed to hospital

By Siphokazi Vuso Time of article published Oct 15, 2021

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CAPE TOWN - The City has launched a probe into an alleged food poisoning incident after residents and children were rushed to hospital at Overcome Heights Informal settlement near Capricorn on Wednesday.

This after residents were allegedly offered samp brought by an organisation offering humanitarian relief.

Residents began experiencing stomach cramps, nausea and vomiting symptoms a few hours after eating the food.

Western Cape Emergency Medical Services (EMS) spokesperson Deanna February said the incident involved 30 adults and 20 children.

“A call for assistance came through to the Emergency Communications Centre at 8.28pm and EMS officials were dispatched to Overcome Heights informal settlement.

“Paramedics arrived at the scene and assisted patients who complained about severe abdominal cramps after they had ingested food that was handed out to them,” she said.

She said the patients were transported to Retreat Community Health Centre (CHC) and Mitchells Plain Community Health Centre (CHC) with the assistance of ER24.

“We are following up with Mitchells Plain CHC but can confirm that 17 patients were admitted to Retreat CHC last night. One has been transferred to Victoria Hospital,” she said.

Resident Neliswa Tom said she was feeling better yesterday after being discharged from hospital.

“The people came to give us food and to educate us about fire management. They said they were based in Johannesburg. We were served samp, but the samp had turned sour but we thought maybe it was just the tomatoes had made it sour. This was around 10am. Around 1pm that’s when we started feeling the stomach aches and abdominal pains, and the children they were just fainting.

“We called our community members and then they called an ambulance to take us to hospital,” she said.

Mayco member for community services and health Zahid Badroodien said a sample of the food has been sent for testing

“The City’s Environmental Health Service has received a sample of the food, which has been sent for testing. In addition, staff are in the area today to conduct follow-up interviews with the affected persons, and to reconstruct a detailed chain of events leading up to the incident,” he said.

Disaster Risk Management Centre spokesperson Charlotte Powell said an investigation has been handed over to the City.

“The City’s Disaster Risk Management Centre completed an assessment. The investigation has been handed over to the City’s Environmental Health Service for further investigation,” Powell said.

Cape Times

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