December 17, 2017

Deadly E. coli Outbreak in Hildale, Utah Kills Two Children

A deadly E. coli outbreak in Hildale, Utah was announced on the Southwest Utah Public Health Department’s Facebook page. The announcement states, “Currently, this outbreak appears to be confined to a limited area with little or no risk to the larger community. We will post updates to this page.” According to news reports, two children have died.

E coli bacteria

A comment on the page states, “This E.coli investigation is specifically focusing on contaminated food or animal exposure.” All of the water tested “so far” has been clean, according to public health officials. More information will be posted on the Department’s Facebook page when it is available.

The two children were hospitalized when they died, Deputy Marshal Daniel Musser told the Salt Lake Tribune. The exact number of illnesses is not known at this time. No more details about this outbreak have been released, but Musser added, “We are focusing on a contained area … at one location.”

Hildale and Colorado City, Arizona, which are right next to each other on the border between the two states, are known as Short Creek Community. The area is populated by Mormon fundamentalists.

The symptoms of an E. coli infection include little or no fever, severe stomach and abdominal pains and cramps, and diarrhea that is usually bloody and/or watery. This infection can develop into hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) in children under five. HUS causes kidney failure, and is usually the cause of death when someone contracts an E. coli infection. Complications of HUS can include strokes and seizures.

E. coli outbreaks in the past have been linked to unpasteurized milk, contaminated water, contaminated fruits and vegetables, and undercooked or improperly handled ground beef. To prevent these outbreaks, it’s important to always handle ground beef with care and cook it to 165°F as tested with a reliable food thermometer. Wash your hands well after using the bathroom, caring for someone who is sick, or changing diapers. And don’t prepare food or drink for anyone while you are sick.

Bad Bug Law Team | Pritzker Law Firm

If you or a loved one have been sickened with an E. coli infection, contact the lawyers who are part of our experienced legal team for help at 1-888-377-8900.

Pritzker Hageman law firm represents and helps people who have been sickened by contaminated food. We get answers, compensation for those who have been injured, and justice through our work. Our lawyers represent families of children sickened with E. coli infections and HUS in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against retailers, grocery stores, food processors, restaurants, daycare centers, schools, and others. Attorney Fred Pritzker and his team recently won $7.5 million for young client whose kidneys failed due to hemolytic uremic syndrome after an E. coli O157:H7 infection. Please note that class action lawsuits are usually not appropriate for outbreak victims because these types of cases are unique.

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