At least 14 people are now known to have been killed by a deadly outbreak of the E.coli virus in Germany.
Hundreds more have been taken seriously ill and with the disease spreading health authorities have warned people not to eat suspected vegetables. Cases have also been reported in visitors to northern Germany from Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK.
With tests now being carried to establish whether the contaminated produce originated in Spain. The northern port city of Hamburg has reported the most cases.
Doctor Jorg Debatin is head of the University Clinic Eppendorf in Hamburg: “We cannot carry more than 60 patients in this clinic which means that we’ll soon have to send people to other clinics. From statistics and all we know about this severe diesease and its development, we have to assume that we may lose more patients to it.”
The outbreak, which affects the blood, kidneys and in severe cases, the nervous system, is thought to be the largest ever in Germany and the biggest of its kind worldwide.
Germany health officials have advised people to avoid eating cucumbers, tomatoes, aubergines and lettuce and some of these products have been removed from shop shelves.