Cracker Barrel ordered to pay more than $9 million to a man for causing serious and permanent injuries

Instead of water, a Cracker Barrel customer was served a disinfectant chemical that causes digestive tract burns.

Photo: Congerdesign / Pixabay

A customer who dined at a Cracker Barrel restaurant sustained serious injuries to his digestive tract. What made the chain have been ordered to pay $9 million to the affected. Although the affected would receive a much smaller amount.

In 2014, William Cronnon was having lunch at a Cracker Barrel in Marion County, Tennessee, when they served him a cleaning chemical instead of water. Taking a sip of what was in the glass, Cronnon felt a burning sensation.

Swallowing the cleaning fluid caused serious physical injury to Cronnon, burning his mouth and esophagus. The lawsuit says that Cronnon is still ravaged by these injuries.

The chemical that Cronnon drank was about Eco-San, a liquid that the restaurant was using to clean the kitchen.

According to WTVC News Channel 9, the jury found that Cracker Barrel acted negligently, including “failing to properly hire and train qualified and competent employees.”

Cronnon’s original lawsuit against the restaurant chain asked Cracker Barrel to pay him $150,000 in damages.. But a jury decided that the company owed the victim much more.

According to the Time Free Press, on January 6, jurors found Cracker Barrel guilty of Cronnon’s injuries. $730,000 in economic damages, $3.6 million in non-economic damages, and $5 million in punitive damages were awarded.

However, Cronnon will receive less than $9 million, because the Tennessee state law limits non-economic damages in a $750,000 personal injury action. A Cracker Barrel spokesperson told the Time Free Press that Cronnon received a total of $6.5 million.

“What made this so egregious is that Cracker Barrel had this policy where they put chemicals in unmarked containers for years,” said Cronnon’s attorney, Thomas Greer. “What I told the jury was that they were playing roulette with the health and safety of everyone who entered there, and Mr. Cronnon paid the price“.

Greer noted that the Eco-San solution was left in a pitcher of water to soak the beverage dispensing machine parts overnight, but the pitcher was not thrown away the next morning as was standard practice and was used by a server to fill Cronnon’s water glass.

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