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Carbon monoxide poisoning from food preparation sickens restaurant patrons

Officials from Hong Kong are looking into carbon monoxide poisoning at a Hong Kong restaurant. 14 People were left with serious health complications and needed hospitalization.

The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health reported the group had a hot pot dinner that used charcoal to cook in one of Wan Chai’s restaurants. A hot pot, a meal shared by several people, is one that uses a pot of broth as the main course. It can also include items like meat and vegetables.

The six men and eight ladies experienced symptoms such as dizziness and vomiting along with nausea and headaches. This occurred about 2 hours after dinner began.

Ten 14 Patients, between 23 & 39,, are stable and have been released from the hospital.

Investigations discovered that the AC was turned on but the windows in the dining room were not closed. The door also was shut during hot pot meals, possibly causing an increase in carbon monoxide levels.

Carbon Monoxide is colorless, tasteless and odorless. It is produced from incomplete combustion of fuels that contain carbon such as gasoline, wood and natural gas. CHP reminded people to only use ventilated fuel-burning devices in well-ventilated areas to cook.

Seizure of meat
In Hong Kong, Food and Environmental Hygiene Departments (FEHD), have also raided shops that were suspected to be selling fresh chilled meat.

FEHD officials marked and sealed approximately 270 kgs of chilled pork from two fresh provisions shops licensed at Kowloon City Road (To Kwa Wan) for further investigation.

The agency started criminal prosecutions against three licensees for alleged violations of the regulations on clean premises and open food.

A FEHD spokesperson stated that if sites violate licensing conditions to sell chilled meat fresh as fresh, then the department may cancel their license.

“Anyone selling chilled meat without permission commits an offence and is liable to a maximum fine of HKD $50,000 (U.S. $6,400) and six months’ imprisonment on conviction. It will monitor fresh meat sales at retail and enforce strict food safety regulations .”

to protect public health.

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