It’s been a bad PR year for energy drinks. Around this time last year, amped-up beverage Monster was tied to five deaths in the US, and Five Hour Energy was cited by the FDA as being involved in 13. Now, Red Bull has found itself on the receiving end of an $85 million wrongful death lawsuit.
The suit was filed by the family of a 33-year-old Brooklyn man who collapsed while playing basketball after drinking Red Bull in 2011. He died of a heart attack, and the medics who arrived at the scene pointed to his consumption of the energy drink in their report. The man’s family says that he was otherwise healthy, and believe the beverage to be the cause of his untimely death.
According to AdAge, a Red Bull spokeswoman declined to comment on the case, but did spare a moment to point out that Red Bull is available in more than 165 countries because health authorities have concluded it is safe to consume, and added that about 35 billion cans have been consumed since Red Bull was created more than 25 years ago.