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Essex Family to Sue TUI after Cryptosporidium Vomiting Bug "Ruins Holiday"

A family from Essex is launching legal action against package holiday company TUI Travel plc, after a holiday in Mallorca was ruined when several members of the party developed a diarrhoea and vomiting bug.

The Cobb family from Stifford Clays and South Ockendon in Essex was staying at the Hotel Jupiter in Alcudia, when several of the party of 15 were stricken by vomiting and diarrhoea.

They had booked the holiday with First Choice and Kristy Cobb from Stifford Clays claims that within one day of arrival at the Hotel Jupiter, members of her family started to fall sick with a vomiting bug, including her daughter Grace. Ms Cobb was also ill and she and her daughter were diagnosed with the serious stomach bug Cryptosporidium when they returned to the UK.

The family has expressed concerns over the standard of cleanliness at the Hotel Jupiter in Alcudia. It is alleged that faeces were in the swimming pool and bathrooms were unhygienic and not cleaned thoroughly.

Once the pool had been cleared of the faeces, it was not drained and re-filled, said Ms Cobb.

“Bathrooms and so on just weren’t clean enough. There was faeces in the swimming pool but it was just fished out by a member of staff – the pool wasn’t drained; and when my one year old son was sick in his cot during the night due to this bug, I was told there was no cleaner available and I couldn’t have fresh sheets till the following morning.”

A spokesman for First Choice has responded by saying that only a “small proportion” of guests at the Hotel Jupiter in Alcudia had been affected by the vomiting and diarrhoea bug at the time Ms Cobb and her family were at the hotel.

“A small proportion of guests reported sickness at the Hotel Jupiter around the time of the Cobb family’s stay. The hotel’s management and independent on-site hygiene company implemented and managed a full deep-cleaning programme designed to reduce the spread of illness.”

Kristy Cobb alleges that staff at the Hotel Jupiter had advised her that the outbreak of illness among guests had been caused by an airborne virus – and despite obvious signs of lack of hygiene, staff claimed that the hotel was not the source of the illness.

The Cobb family has now launched legal action against TUI Travel plc. Many of the family were still suffering from the symptoms of the vomiting and diarrhoea bug one month after they returned home. Kristy Cobb says that she and her daughter were the worst affected, with holiday ruined as a result of the vomiting illness.

Cryptosporidium is a parasite present in faeces and is easy to swallow when using swimming pools if they are not kept clean or if holidaymakers do not shower before using the pools. If babies wearing soiled nappies are also allowed to use swimming pools, the bug can be passed on to other swimmers.

It is essential to practise good hygiene to prevent infection – including washing hands before handling food.

If you have been diagnosed with Cryptosporidium or other stomach bug after a package holiday, Simpson Millar’s dedicated travel team could help you win compensation.

Call 0808 145 1353 or complete the online enquiry form for free initial advice and an assessment of your claim.

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Dated: 11/11/2011

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