DOTHAN, Ala (WDHN) — A DeFuniak Springs woman has filed a lawsuit against a Dothan McDonald’s after alleging she was served “chemicals in a cup” and was denied medical attention from staff.
According to the lawsuit, Sherry Head was in the drive-thru of the McDonald’s at 3520 Ross Clark Circle, when she ordered a coffee in December 2021.
Through the drive-thru speaker heard one employee say her coffee was unavailable because the machine was being cleaned. Another employee immediately said, “No, it’s ready to go.”
“I took a sip, and immediately my mouth and throat went numb, then started burning. Now I have permanent scarring in my throat and may need corrective surgery,” Head said
The lawsuit alleges that after tasting the drink, Head noticed something was wrong and she went back through the drive-thru and asked for help. The manager at the window said, “It’s fine,” and slammed it.
Head called emergency services and when first responders arrived, McDonald’s employees did not help once again, refusing to show first responders the bottle of chemicals that had been used to clean the machine.
Heads complaint states:
“For nearly a decade, McDonald’s has been promising to improve safety standards to prevent its customers from being poisoned by chemical cleaning solutions; and for nearly a decade, McDonald’s has failed to do so . . . it is time for McDonald’s to change its ways.”
The lawsuit filed in Houston County Court demands $3 million in compensatory damages and $10 million in punitive damages.
Head’s doctors say she has been diagnosed with scarring and narrowing of her throat, difficulty swallowing, chronic gastritis, acid reflux, and abdominal pain caused by inflammation and erosion of the stomach. She may need surgery in the future to repair the damage done to her throat and preserve her ability to swallow.
Murphey Family Restaurants are looking into the alleged complaint and will be releasing a response on Monday.
This is not the first reported incident against the fast food franchise for alleged chemicals in their beverages. in 2018, a McDonald’s manager apologized for serving a cup of coffee with cleaning chemicals to a pregnant customer.