At least 10 people have been stricken by a tainted batch of nacho cheese from a California gas station, including one man who died, and another woman who has been left paralyzed.
Martin Galindo, a 37-year-old father of two, contracted botulism from the cheese, fell into a coma, and was left breathing through a ventilator. On Thursday of last week, he was taken off of life support and died.
33-year-old Lavinia Kelly drizzled the deadly cheese on her Doritos during a stop at Valley Oak Food and Fuel in Walnut Grove, about 30 miles south of Sacramento. Within hours, she fell sick and ended in a hospital, unable to move her eyes.
From USA Today:
Food-borne botulism is an uncommon but serious paralytic illness, the department noted, stemming from an odorless and colorless toxin found in foods not properly processed or stored. Most associate it with food canned at home, not sold in a store, and significant doses can lead to death. It’s treated with an antitoxin, typically in intensive care units.
Kelly found herself in such a unit, according to The Bee, using tape to hold open her paralyzed eyelids. She’s suing the gas station over the ordeal, which her partner said has left them bewildered.
“She’s been doing good, and we just don’t understand why this happened over a bag of chips and nacho cheese,” Ricky Torres told the newspaper last week. “Really? How does that happen?”
To repeat: She has to TAPE HER EYES OPEN.
Valley Oak and Food temporarily lost its food and drink permit earlier this month, The Sacramento Bee reports. The store selling the tainted cheese pulled the product on May 5, according to health officials, who believe there’s no further public risk.
Still, perhaps you’d better step away from gas station nachos.