Medical tests have come back clean for a cook at the Paso Robles Applebee’s who accidentally cut off the tip of a finger that later ended up in a customer’s salad, the customer’s attorney said Tuesday.
Atascadero resident Cathleen Martin, her husband and child ordered a salad Dec. 20 at the Applebee’s restaurant on Theatre Drive, said Martin’s attorney, Eric Traut, of Santa Ana. All of them ate from the dish before discovering the fingertip inside, Traut said.
Management was immediately notified and admitted to the error, Traut said. On Thursday, a franchise spokesman apologized to the family in an issued statement and said the cook would willingly submit to medical screenings. State law prohibits the franchise from forcing the employee to do so.
Traut said the employee was tested and results came back negative for health risks. Traut said the family, in the coming months, may seek additional tests, to which the employee has also agreed.
“They stepped up and did the right thing,” said Traut, adding that the news came as a “huge relief” for Martin and her family.
Martin still has an outstanding claim against the restaurant seeking unspecified damages for emotional distress, medical expenses for testing and lost income. Claims are the first step in filing a civil lawsuit in court.