Bride and groom consider legal action over wedding gastro outbreak

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A bride and groom have told family they’re considering legal action after a gastro outbreak hit more than 30 guests who attended their wedding reception at an Albert Park venue at the weekend.

More than 30 people who ate at the venue, The Park, on Saturday have been struck by gastro-like symptoms this week, the Health Department says, including at least two who spent Monday night in hospital.

The Park reception centre in Albert Park

A Health Department-led investigation was still to determine the outbreak’s cause on Tuesday. It is not expected to be linked to a cluster of listeria cases under investigation in Victoria.

One attendee, who spoke to The Age on the condition of anonymity, said guests had the choice of chicken or pork for their main meal.

The guest said the couple were not prepared to speak publicly while they were considering legal action.

The newlyweds told family on Tuesday that they were collecting statements to support a class action from guests who became ill.

The guest who spoke to The Age said as many as 70 people from the 300 who attended might be sick.

The guest said guests had reported symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, sweating and delirium after attending the wedding. He said there had been a number of elderly people at the event.

The Health Department said in a statement that it was aware of a gastroenteritis outbreak involving guests who attended an Albert Park reception centre on Saturday.

“We’re working with Port Phillip Council to investigate the source of the outbreak and to ensure all appropriate infection prevention and control measures are in place,” a spokesperson said.

The Park, which markets itself as a perfect setting for weddings and having a capacity for up to 500 seated guests, said it was co-operating with inquiries.

“We are currently investigating a reported outbreak of illness following an event at The Park on Saturday,” venue manager Bahaa Harb said in a statement. “We are working closely with event guests and with council to determine the cause of the outbreak.”

An outbreak of listeriosis linked to shredded chicken was also being investigated in the state this week after five Victorians reported falling ill last month.

Victorian Chief Health Officer Clare Looker issued a statement on Tuesday warning of a “multi-state cluster of listeriosis” that was under investigation nationally.

The outbreak, which Queensland Health investigators linked to M&J Chickens’ shredded chicken in three states, hit more than 30 people.

The Health Department says listeriosis is an uncommon but potentially serious infection.

“People at increased risk include older people, pregnant women and their babies, people with underlying health conditions such as cancer, liver or kidney disease or diabetes,” it says.

“People at increased risk of listeriosis should avoid consuming high-risk foods.”

The department recommends anyone who believes they are suffering from gastroenteritis or listeriosis visit its website for more information.

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