Water samples taken from the Laurie Hollow area of the Lake of the Ozarks has tested positive for elevated levels of E. coli, according to the Kansas City Star. The star reports that:
Fifty water samples were taken this week from the lake, and only the one from Laurie Hollow was high. In that sample, the E. coli level exceeded standards for swimming.
The "good news" is that the Missouri Department of Natural Resources saw fit to alert the public of the results this time around. In May, test results showing high levels of E. coli were hidden from the public, in an apparent attempt to protect tourism and local businesses. The Missouri Attorney General investigated the failure to report the problem. Now a Missouri Senate Committee is conducting its own investigation.
E. coli is the general term for a family of fecal bacteria that includes more dangerous subtypes like E. coli O157:H7. Pathogenic strains of E. coli can cause severe gastroenteritis in humans when consumed or swallowed.