U.S. News

More Than 300 Now Report Illness After Eating at Olive Garden


Darden Restaurants is temporarily closing the Olive Garden restaurant connected to hundreds of illnesses near Indianapolis.

Health officials say over 300 people have reported getting sick and three people have been hospitalized after eating at an Olive Garden restaurant in the Indianapolis suburb of Castleton. Earlier today, officials said they had 160 claims of illness.

The Olive Garden restaurant chain said it is working with health officials to find the cause of the outbreak. Shares of parent company Darden Restaurants finished the day lower  .

The news makes Olive Garden at least the third U.S. restaurant chain this month to be linked to widespread customer illnesses.

Some customers who ate at the Olive Garden restaurant northeast of Indianapolis between Dec. 9 and Dec. 13 have reported nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and in some cases fever, said John Althardt, a spokesman for the Marion County Health Department. Also, six restaurant workers reported on Monday that they were feeling ill.

Tests of the sick peoples' stool and leftovers they took home from the restaurant will be conducted later today or Monday, Althardt said. He added that the tests would take about 48 hours.

A Marion County Health Department spokesman says they're trying to isolate the cause and have found no health code violations at the restaurant.

In a statement, the company said it's pleased that the health department has determined that people should feel comfortable continuing to dine at Olive Garden. Darden says there have been no related incidents reported at other Olive Garden Restaurants and "there is no reason for us to believe that there is any connection with any e-coli outbreaks of any type."