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Government Warns Against Visiting Lake Superior due to E. coli Contamination

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 17:04:09 EST

The Minnesota Department of Health has detected high levels of E.coli bacteria in the water at numerous beaches along the shore of Lake Superior. The contamination was detected during a weekly routine inspection, and the Department of Health has recommended no contact with the water at 42nd Avenue East Beach and Brighton Beach in East Duluth.

High levels of bacteria were also detected at Minnesota Point 15th Street Harbor Side Beach, Park Point 20th Street/ Hearding Island Canal Beach, and Park Point Sky Harbor Parking Lot Beach.

The affected areas have recently been exposed to severe flooding caused by heavy rains. The flooding washed bacteria from sewage systems into lakes, rivers, and streams, leaving the water contaminated.

Individuals, including several children, have contracted bacterial infections from contact with the contaminated water. They have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a life-threatening complication from an E.coli infection.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), bacterial contamination of beaches is becoming a prevalent issue.

'In summertime, sewage contamination of lakes and oceans poses a greater threat to public health, as demonstrated by this unfortunate case,' states Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc.

'EMSL tests for sewage contamination by analyzing samples for certain "indicator organisms," such as Bacteroides, fecal coliforms, E. coli, and Enterococcus. The presence of these bacteria  in environmental samples is indicative of fecal contamination,' he continued.

EMSL also provides our clients with more definitive answers to risk exposure by testing for individual pathogens such as Salmonella, Giardia, and Cryptosporidium.

For more information about EMSL's testing services, please contact EMSL at 800-220-3675, , or visit

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a full service testing company providing quality lab services under the same private ownership since 1981. Including the corporate lab facility in Cinnaminson, NJ, EMSL Analytical operates over thirty laboratories nationwide in the US and Canada. We provide analytical services for environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ), industrial hygiene, forensics and materials science, consumer products, food safety, PCR, pharmaceutical, asbestos, lead, and radiological samples. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations, as well as state and federal regulating bodies.

Source: WebWire

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