Yesterday, there was a report of E. coli contamination in the Merrimack River in Massachusetts. Today a report of a positive test from the Greenwood Creek in Greenwood, Indiana. The creek is apparently a popular swimming spot in the summer. General tests for E. coli do not indicate whether or not E. coli O157:H7 is present. The dangerous bacteria is, however, one of the many strains of E. coli.
Waterborne E. coli presents a risk to human health, particularly where drinking water is involved. Last summer hundreds were sickened in Oklahoma in an outbreak of E. coli O111, another pathogenic strain in the E. coli family. Health officials have tied that outbreak to well water served in a restaurant.