Numerous Coachella Shuttle Drivers Still Experiencing Symptoms

Carmela Karcher

It’s been four days since a food-born illness struck Coachella shuttle bus drivers.

But according to Jose Arballo, public information specialist with Riverside County Public Health, some are still feeling sick days later.

“We spoke to some of them yesterday and they were still not feeling very well,” Arballo said. “They do not paint a very good picture from the first few days after.”

We spoke with a shuttle bus driver who experienced this illness.

He said very shortly after the drivers ate food from the caterer, drivers started experiencing intense symptoms and had to cancel their routes.

As he was on his route to drop off festival goers in Palm Springs, he started getting sick and afterwards, said it was the worst he has ever felt.

“We want to be sure as best we can to nail it down,” he continued. “There were several options of food, one was a pasta dish and salad was also available.”

However, Arballo said this quick outbreak of food poisoning is not common.

“The thing is, it’s the severity of the illness too that’s kind of telling us something and also the symptoms themselves. Again, they were fed let’s say at around late evening on Sunday and their illnesses started right away within a few hours. That’s a little bit unusual. So, that’s what we are trying to find out,” Arballo explained.

He said over 40 drivers were transported to the hospital but only a few were admitted.

But during the initial report, over 100 drivers said they were feeling ill at the location.

With Stagecoach just a day away, Arballo said they are taking steps to make sure this doesn’t happen again.

“The Environmental Health Department is working with the organizers there doing inspections of food facilities out in the location so we are hoping that their thorough work will prevent anything like this from happening,” he continued.

Right now, public health is encouraging any bus driver who was there to call and provide more information, even if you didn’t experience any symptoms.

That way they can narrow down what might have caused the outbreak.

The number is: 951-358-5107

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