A couple struck down with food poisoning at the same Egyptian hotel where two British tourists died last week have shared stomach-churning pictures of raw chicken they claim they were served. Paul and Bev Vanstone say they got salmonella at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic hotel in Egypt earlier this month. They were holidaying at the Hurghada resort with their two children and Mr Vanstone’s mother when four of them came down with stomach cramps, vomiting and diarrhoea. It is the same hotel where John and Susan Cooper, both 64, died last Tuesday during a Thomas Cook ‘holiday of a lifetime’. A couple struck down with food poisoning at the same Egyptian hotel where two British tourists died last week have shared stomach-churning pictures of raw chicken they claim they were served.
The travel company has since removed all its guests from the hotel as a precaution. Mr Vanstone, 41, shared photos showing raw, pink chicken he claims he was served at the hotel. He said: ‘There was a party of six of us that went. My wife was treated for gastroenteritis, my 14-year-old daughter went down with a vomiting and diarrhoea bug and two days before leaving I had really bad stomach cramps and diarrhoea. ‘While we were there we had to complain because we were served raw chicken. I ate that but if that had been my daughter… It was raw – very, very raw.’ The dad-of-two said he arrived home in Oxford on August 6 and went to the doctor where he was diagnosed with high levels of salmonella poisoning. He later lodged a complaint with Thomas Cook, but said the doctor was unable to confirm exactly what made them all ill. Mr Vanstone added: ‘It could be chicken, it could have been the water, it could have been anything that you can get salmonella from.” Thomas Cook said that the circumstances of Mr and Mrs Cooper’s deaths were still unclear.
Bev Vanstone was treated for gastroenteritis after eating raw, pink chicken she claims she was served at the hotel A Thomas Cook spokesman said: ‘We are deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of two of our customers. ‘The circumstances of their deaths are still unclear. We have also received further reports of a raised level of illness among guests. ‘Safety is always our first priority, so as a precautionary measure we have taken a decision to remove all our customers from this hotel. ‘We continue to work closely with the hotel and are supporting the authorities with their investigations.’ Dieter Geiger, general manager of the Aqua Magic hotel, said he and his staff were ‘deeply saddened’ by Mr and Mrs Cooper’s deaths. He went on: ‘In such a circumstance, very little can be said that will help.
This makes it even more important to stick to the facts. ‘The doctor’s preliminary report indicates that death was due to natural causes. There are no indications to support allegations of an increased incidence of illness at the hotel. ‘Such rash speculations should urgently be put aside out of respect for the family members of the deceased persons and for other guests.’