Back in 2018, a food poisoning incident at a local restaurant in Singapore, Spize.
72 people fell sick with gastroenteritis after consuming food from the restaurant, and 38-year-old Fadli Salleh tragically passed away on 14 Nov 2018.
Now, his wife, Madam Noor Hidayu, is suing Spize and Spize Events for her husband’s death for damages amounting to S$631,000.
The sum that Madam Noor Hidayu is seeking includes the amount of money required to bring up their two children, 9 and 11 years old at the time of Mr Fadli’s death.
Mr Fadli, who’s the only son, was also taking care of his parents, his 61-year-old father and 58-year-old mother before his death.
Madam Noor Hidayu claims that the negligent actions of the two firms caused the death of the sole breadwinner of her family.
Both firms had “breached a duty of care” owed to Mr Mohamad Fadli because the food was prepared and delivered by them.
The food was “severely contaminated and unfit or unsafe for human consumption”.
It was also pointed out that when NEA and relevant agencies carried out inspections on Spize back in 2018, many problems and lapses were found included the presence of salmonella and faecal bacteria.
A coroner’s report had said that Mr Fadli passed away of “sepsis and multiple organ failure from acute gastroenteritis after eating the bento set prepared by Spize’s River Valley outlet”.
Spize, on the other hand, said any gastroenteritis suffered by Mr Mohamad Fadli is due to his own negligence.
They noted that he had eaten the bento set two hours after the recommended “consume by” timing which was “clearly indicated” on the invoice.
Spize also pointed out their disclaimer where they “would not be liable for persons who consumed the bento sets after the recommended period.”
It was added that Mr Fadli had not looked for medical attention immediately.
He allegedly saw a doctor only on 7 Nov even though he had a high fever of 39.9 degrees Celsius on 6 Nov 2020.
Spize argues that the salmonella and other bacteria discovered at their premises might not be the same that was present in the bento box.
In addition, one of their deliverymen had eaten a Spize bento box in the morning but had nothing untoward happened.
The trial is ongoing and a pre-trial conference has been scheduled at the High Court for Nov 2020.
Aftermath Of 2018 Incident
After the unfortunate death of Mr Mohammad Fadli, the authorities admitted that Spize was now on their “crosshairs“.
Inspections at the Spize River Valley facility revealed horrifying findings and the outlet’s operating license was terminated with immediate effect.
Then-NEA’s director-general for environmental public health said:
“We are angry and upset, and it is unbecoming that the operators are not taking (food hygiene) seriously… It is really unbecoming that our operators are not taking this seriously.
“We will ensure that the appropriate weight of the law is taken upon them, for the lack of this minimum duty of care.”
It was also noted that Spize’s other outlets had no lapses found then.
And lest you’re wondering, yes, Spize is still operating two outlets in 2020.