A German man has filed a lawsuit against international fast food restaurant McDonalds, claiming that he swallowed a juice dispenser valve upon drinking his beverage. The incident allegedly occurred at a San Fernando Valley McDonalds in April of 2012.
Klaus Geier says he ordered his meal via the McDonald’s drive-through, and upon exiting the venue he discovered he did not have a straw for his orange juice. As he was already out of the drive-through and on his way, Geier decided to simply take the lid off his cup and drink it that way. After swallowing the first few mouthfuls, the man says he became aware of an object having been lodged in his throat. He believes the object was a four-inch valve that belonged to the orange juice dispenser from which his beverage was retrieved. The lawsuit details how, upon Geier’s attempted removal of the valve, the tip’s serrated spear was ejected into his esophagus. According to the man’s lawyer, his client then proceeded to pull both the valve and spear out of his throat, tearing it in the process and leading to severe injury.
Geier says is he left with two options regarding his throat injury, neither of which have a very good outcome. The first option is to seek surgery to repair the damage, a highly risky procedure that could leave him without a voice. The other option is to leave his throat as is, and continue to suffer mucus buildup and a raspy voice.
This is not the first lawsuit that McDonalds has been involved in recently. In February of this year, a man attempted to sue the restaurant for one and a half million dollars after he claimed the McDonalds employees he interacted with failed to provide him with more than one napkin. Webster Lucas said that upon his request for additional napkins, the manager outright refused his request, and then went on to mumble something involving the words “you people.” Lucas believes that this remark was racially motivated to insult his African-American ethnicity. He says that the incident caused him to suffer mental anguish and made it impossible for him to continue working. Upon emailing the general manager of said McDonalds location, he says he was given free burgers for his troubles, compensation the man says he found to be insulting.
One of the most well-known cases is the 1994 lawsuit a New Mexico woman filed against the restaurant in which she was eventually awarded almost three million dollars. The woman’s case centered around the coffee she had ordered being so hot that she suffered third degree burns upon her pelvic area after accidentally spilling it on herself. She was forced to spend eight days in the hospital while she was treated for skin grafting, and another two years of medical treatment followed this procedure. The lawsuit garnered polarizing views, with some feeling the lawsuit was frivolous and a mere money grab, and others standing up for the woman’s rights. Stella Liebeck was 79 at the time of the lawsuit.
It remains to be seen what will become of this most recent lawsuit against McDonalds restaurants. Management of the location in question have yet to make a statement surrounding the alleged incident.
By Rebecca Grace