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Four of 10 areas sampled at the Northwest Fairgrounds in Lynden, WA, match the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 that has now sickened 25 people, mostly children, in Whatcom County, WA.
The Lynden Fairground was the site of the April 21-23 Milk Makers Fest attended by more than 1,300 children from area schools. Among the features presented there was a farm animal petting zoo. All of those sickened in this outbreak attended the dairy event, helped set it up, or are relatives or close contacts of people who were there.
The environmental test results were reported Friday afternoon in the latest update from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH).
The on-site investigative team, including health officials from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), DOH and Whatcom County, has not announced any specific source(s) of the infections but appears to be narrowing down the focus.
DOH also announced Friday that the latest confirmed case count is now at 25 people, with nine of those considered secondary cases. There are also several other people whose illnesses are under investigation as possibly being connected to the outbreak, according to the DOH update.
10 people have been hospitalized and four of them developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a kidney disease associated with E. coli infections.
E. coli: Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.