HEALTH

Eight cases of E. coli in Utah County, five hospitalized

Aug 4, 2023, 4:52 PM | Updated: Aug 7, 2023, 4:05 pm

(KSL TV)...

(KSL TV)

(KSL TV)

PROVO, Utah — Within the last two weeks, eight cases of E. coli have been confirmed among Utah County residents and five people have been hospitalized.

According to the Utah County Health Department, all of the reported cases are residents of Lehi City or have close ties.

“This is a critical situation, and I am concerned for the public. I want residents to be aware that pressurized irrigation water should not be used for anyone to play in,” Mark Johnson, Lehi City Mayor, said. “No one should drink irrigation water that comes to their home.”

The health department said a preliminary investigation suggests the likely source of the spread is use of pressurized irrigation water for drinking and play.

Multiple departments are working to gather water samples to investigate the source of the bacteria.

A release from the Utah County Health Department stated:

“Drinking and/or playing in irrigation water could pose a risk to you, your children, and pets. Pressurized irrigation water is untreated and can contain harmful contaminants like E. coli. It is important that the public take steps to reduce the risk of infection for themselves and family members:

  • Individuals should not drink irrigation water – especially if you do not know if your water source is culinary/potable or a secondary water source, such as landscape or garden irrigation. Contact your local City Public Works office with any questions about a city’s water source.
  • Individuals should not use irrigation water for play – such as slip-and-slides, inflatable bounce houses, kiddie pools, sprinklers, etc.”

If you notice any of the following symptoms, contact a Healthcare Provider:

  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

E. coli can be transmitted from person to person and can be prevented by thorough hand-washing.

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Eight cases of E. coli in Utah County, five hospitalized