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Fort Worth woman sues Olive Garden after stuffed mushrooms cause severe burns to throat

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Steve Wilson, Robert Philpot, and Bud Kennedy discuss the restaurants opening at the Crockett Row Food Hall on West 7th.

A Fort Worth woman is suing Olive Garden after she says an extremely hot stuffed mushroom got lodged in her throat, which caused her to temporarily stop breathing and resulted in severe burns.

Danny Howard filed a lawsuit against the restaurant on March 8 in Tarrant County District Court. She alleges that the restaurant didn’t warn her that the mushrooms were extremely hot. Her attorney, Jess Lotspeich, declined to comment.

On Aug. 11, 2017, Howard went to an Olive Garden in Tarrant County and ordered the stuff mushroom appetizer. When it was served to her, there was no warning that would indicate that the “mushrooms were particularly hot or (carried) the risk to cause severe burns,” according to the lawsuit.

Howard took a bite of the mushroom, and it immediately burned her mouth. The burning mushroom then became lodged in her throat, which caused her to choke and stop breathing. The lawsuit says that Howard “frantically shuffled through the restaurant in need of help,” but was unable to speak. She eventually vomited in a kitchen station.

After Howard went home, she decided that she needed to see a doctor. As she drove herself to the emergency room, the lawsuit says that Howard’s throat began to close. Fearing she’d suffocate, Howard called 911.

She was taken to Harris Methodist Hospital and then went on a Careflight to the Burn Unit of Parkland Hospital in Dallas, according to the lawsuit.

Howard alleges that Olive Garden was negligent in not warning her about the mushrooms. She is seeking $200,000 to $1 million in damages.

A representative for Olive Garden couldn’t immediately be reached.

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Nichole Manna reports on crime, breaking news and other mayhem across North Texas. Before moving to Fort Worth in July 2018, she covered crime and breaking news in Tennessee, North Carolina, Nebraska and Kansas. She is a 2012 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and grew up in Florida.


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