A few short months ago, Jan Harding was almost killed after she drank iced tea that was mixed with chemicals. Harding drank a single sip of sweetened iced tea at Dickey’s Barbecue in South Jordan, UT and stated, “I think I just drank acid”. After investigation authorities confirmed, “A restaurant employee unintentionally put the heavy-duty cleaner lye in a sugar bag, and another worker mistakenly mixed it into the iced tea dispenser. Lye, which looks like sugar, is an odorless chemical used for degreasing deep fryers”. The restaurant quickly reassured consumers that Harding was the first and only to drink from this botched batch of iced tea, and no one else was harmed. Other allegations have arisen of incidents with this particular chemical in this restaurant chain, Dickey’s has not provided comment.
Harding has reached a settlement with the barbecue chain restaurant for her near death incident. “Dickey’s Barbecue and Jan Harding issued a joint statement this week announcing they came to terms on an agreement that will lead to extensive changes at the business to ensure such an incident never happens again”. No details of the deal or how much money Jan Harding will receive has been disclosed by either parties. Settlement was reached without a lawsuit or charges being filed, there was no evidence of criminal wrongdoing in this particular incident. It has been reported that all encounters since the incident have been friendly, Harding and her family were focused on working with the restaurant to implement new procedures so such an unfortunate incident would not be repeated in the future.
After Harding unknowingly drank from this tainted batch of tea, she suffered deep ulcerated burns to her esophagus. She had to be hospitalized for two weeks, and was in critical condition for a large portion of her time there. She will need to undergo continuous tests to ensure there are no long term complications from this incident. Jan Harding will definitely think twice before sipping from any iced tea in the future.