Washington officials ask CDC for help with E. coli outbreak

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SEATTLE (AP) — Washington health officials are asking for federal help to figure out the source of the E. coli outbreak that has sickened at least 45 people since the Milk Makers Fest in Lynden.

Washington’s epidemiologist for communicable diseases Dr. Scott Lindquist tells the Seattle Times (http://bit.ly/1ImFrnQ) he’s requested that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assist county and state officials in tracking the spread of the bacteria.

Most of those reported ill were first-graders, although some adults and older children also became sick. The main sources are contaminated food, water and surfaces, along with contact with livestock.

About 1,325 first-graders, plus teachers and parents, from all Whatcom County school districts went to the late-April festival. It was held at the Northwest Washington Fair & Event Center.

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