Two Students Almost Died After Having 300 Cups of Coffee
Two students were mistakenly given the equivalent of 300 cups of coffee due to a calculation error last year. Sports science students Alex Rossetto and Luke Parkin were immediately admitted to the intensive care unit.
In March 2015 the 20-year-old students volunteered for a study on the effects of caffeine on exercise at Northumbria University. The university was fined £400,000 after a court hearing.
The students were supposed to be given 0.3g of caffeine. But instead, they were given 30g due to a misplaced decimal mark inputted on a mobile phone calculator, BBC reported.
Prosecutor Adam Farrer said the overdose could have been fatal. He told the court there was a previous case that reported a death after consumption of just 18g. He pointed out that the staff was not experienced and competent enough to have performed the test.
According to The Sun, Mr. Rossetto was kept in the hospital for six days. He lost 26.5lbs. and reported short-term memory loss. Mr. Parkin on the other hand was treated for two days and lost 22lbs.. Thankfully, both Mr. Rossetto and Parkin made a full physical recovery.
Judge Edward Bindloss fined the university £400,000 and ordered them to pay £26,468 in costs plus a victim surcharge. He said the university should have made it a high priority and risk assessment should have been properly implemented.
He added "Both were sportsmen and fit young men. Luckily for them and for everyone they were in the sort of shape that was able to deal with this large amount of caffeine."
Last month the university admitted the health and safety breach during a court hearing at the Sunderland Magistrates' Court. The university said they were deeply and genuinely sorry about the incident and emphasized that the welfare of the students and staff were a priority at all times.