TUI’s solicitors have finally agreed to accept liability for an outbreak of illness affecting British holidaymakers following a food poisoning outbreak in Mexico in 2017. The solicitors agreed to pay 95% of a group claim made for food poisoning at the renamed TUI Blue El Dorado Seaside Suites.
Cases of Cyclospora food poisoning (known as Cyclospora) have been reoccurring since 2015 in the Riviera Maya region. These cases have been linked to raspberries, mint leaves and cilantro served at local hotels. Given the typical incubation period before the onset of symptoms (7-10 days), the illness normally takes effect by the end of a holiday. Given that travellers may have been involved in numerous activities before the symptoms appearing, holiday companies deny any legal responsibility on the basis that the hotel was not the cause of infection.
These illness claims are better presented in groups, because tour operators are reluctant to release information to suggest a hotel was both the common and likely source. In this case, applications to the court for disclosure of documents held by TUI developed the claim significantly; such documents should always be volunteered.
The Pandemic delayed legal proceedings, but Mrs Grace Turner from Glasgow was pleased with the damages she received for her injuries – the matter settled for £7600.00. Other members of the group represented by Simpson Millar received similar awards. Some members received much more, after complications with IBS arose.
Trying to prevent Cyclospora does not appear to be a priority for hotels in the Riviera Maya region of Mexico. Because of this, British holidaymakers will continue to experience illness in 2022 resulting in further claims being made against TUI. Sustainable and reliable sources of food should be encouraged, and companies who use human faecal matter to fertilise crops must be avoided.
If you have been ill whilst on holiday in Mexico, I would recommend you seek advice from your family GP immediately and insist on a stool test. Of course, this isn’t a pleasant experience, but doing so ensures you are properly treated.
If you experience illness on a regulated package holiday with TUI or any other UK tour operator, please contact our talented Holiday Law Team for advice. We can assess whether or not you have a claim, and can then give you the opportunity to instruct us on no win no fee terms.