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Leamington Fish Bar owner told to pay fine after customer is given acid to drink

The owner of a fish and chip bar opposite Smack in Leamington has been fined after a customer ended up in hospital after she was given highly acidic undiluted vinegar.

Ali Varvil, who owns Leamington Fish Bar and Spa Catering Ltd, was fined £3,440 on 10 September after one of his employees failed to dilute some vinegar before giving it to a woman in July 2014.

The woman was left with corrosive chemical burns to her mouth and oesophagus.

An investigation into the incident by Warwick District Council (WDC) officers revealed that the employees had not been properly trained in the diluting procedure.

As a result, the employee had unknowingly given the customer pure acetic acid, a harmful and corrosive substance.

According to an article in the Leamington Observer, after consuming the acid, which the employee had described as ‘strong vinegar’, the woman started vomiting and felt unwell.

She was then taken by an ambulance, and spent three days in hospital for treatment on the chemical burns.

Councillor Moira-Ann Granger, the WDC spokesman for health, told the Leamington Observer that “Warwick District Council working with businesses to allow them to effectively protect their staff and members of the public from risks to their health and safety. Where there is evidence that a business has failed to meet acceptable standards and placed persons at risk we will take enforcement action.”

Leamington Fish Bar has been contacted for comment.


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