Yarborough Applegate attorney Liam Duffy recently secured a $315,000 jury verdict on behalf of a client who required emergency surgery after ingesting a metal wire that was embedded in a grilled chicken dish from Outback Steakhouse. In a major win, the lawsuit has led to a safety change across the entire Bloomin’ Brands family of restaurants, a move that will protect customers worldwide.
After eating food from Outback Steakhouse in Florence, South Carolina, our client experienced a sharp, piercing pain in her throat. The culprit: a 1-inch, thin metal wire bristle that was lodged in her esophagus. Given the dangerous proximity to vital arteries, removal of the wire required upper endoscopic surgery, with medical bills for the ordeal totaling nearly $45,000.
The Yarborough Applegate team and co-counsel from the Jennings Law Firm in Bennettsville filed the lawsuit, believing that the source of the wire was most likely a grill brush—a conclusion that was later disputed by Outback Steakhouse. During discovery, we focused on finding all previous reports of Outback Steakhouse customers being served food containing wire bristles. After several lengthy discovery battles, a judge ordered Outback Steakhouse to produce three years’ worth of prior similar incidents, which revealed that our client’s injury was hardly an isolated or unforeseeable occurrence.
After a week-long jury trial in Florence County, we are proud that the results not only deliver compensation to cover our client’s medical bills, physical pain, and mental anguish, but protect the dining public from this well-known danger. Earlier this month, Bloomin’ Brands rolled out a new, safer, wire-bristle-free grill brush to thousands of its restaurants worldwide. This includes all Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s Italian Grill, and Bonefish Grill locations. Our client’s efforts in bringing this case to trial were paramount in the corporation enacting this change.
At Yarborough Applegate, our team works diligently to protect those who have suffered personal injuries, from consumer products to car accidents. We hope to help victims move forward by delivering the results and justice they deserve. But as always, our ultimate goal is to inspire positive change and stop preventable injuries from occurring in the first place.
If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury and need someone to fight on your behalf, contact Yarborough Applegate today.
Disclaimer: Every case is unique, and prior results do not guarantee future outcomes.