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Common bacteria caused Thanksgiving dinner deaths

ANTIOCH, Calif. (AP) — A standard food-borne bacteria caused an sickness that left three individuals lifeless and sickened 22 others who attended a dinner at an occasions corridor within the San Francisco suburb of Antioch on Thanksgiving Day, health officers stated Tuesday.

Dr. Louise McNitt, deputy health officer with Contra Costa County Health Services, stated the deaths and sicknesses have been caused by bacteria named Clostridium perfringens.

“Clostridium perfringens is one of the most common foodborne illnesses in the U.S. It can be found in the human intestine without hurting us, but eating food containing large amounts of this bacteria can cause illness and in some cases death,” McNitt stated. The bacteria may be discovered within the soil, in individuals and in animals, she stated.

Officials recognized the three individuals who died as Christopher Cappetti, 43, Chooi Keng Cheah, 59, and Jane Evans, 69. All have been residents of assisted dwelling amenities in Antioch.

The bacteria was probably present in one of many meals gadgets that wasn’t cooked to the appropriate temperature or held on the proper temperature when eaten, McNitt stated.

It was not decided which dish contained it.

However, officers stated that after in depth interviews, it was decided that those that have been sickened and died ate turkey and mashed potatoes. They additionally ate across the similar time of day.

Some dishes served on the occasion, together with cooked turkey, have been delivered to the location after they have been ready in personal houses.

McNitt stated most strains of the bacteria are innocent and that there isn’t any solution to measure what would have been a deadly degree within the victims.

“This bacteria usually causes fairly mild symptoms, such as stomach cramping and diarrhea that lasts for 6 to 12 hours,” stated McNitt, including that it could possibly extra adversely impression these with compromised immune methods. “It can vary from person to person as to how they react to illness.”

Officials stated correct meals dealing with is important to stop foodborne sickness, together with cooking meals to correct temperatures; cooling and storing them appropriately if they are not going to be eaten immediately; separating uncooked meats from meals that will not be cooked; storing meals correctly; and washing palms and cooking surfaces typically.

“We’re saddened for the families that suffered losses this holiday season. We encourage anyone planning charity events where food will be served to the public to contact us to understand the permitting process and to learn about food safety,” stated Dr. Marilyn Underwood, environmental health director for the county.

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