Norovirus infection confirmed in Horseshoe Lake swimmer

The swimming beach at Kitsap Lake is once again closed due to high levels of E. coli in the water.

A warning about swimming in the water at Kitsap Lake has been ongoing since July 10 — officials from Kitsap County Public Health had advised the public to not swim in Kitsap Lake due to an algae bloom — but on Wednesday officials closed the beach as well.

Samples taken Tuesday at Kitsap Lake Park swimming beach showed the levels of E. coli to be 2419 MPN/100 mL, officials said in a press release. The closure level is 126 MPN/100 mL. MPN/100 mL stands for “most probable number” in reference to the number of bacteria colonies that can grow in a sample.

The public should avoid all contact with the water, including swimming, wading or any type of water activity where the water could be swallowed or otherwise get inside the eyes, nose and mouth.

No illnesses have been reported in connection to Kitsap Lake at this time.

Horseshoe Lake nonovirus update

Horseshoe Lake in South Kitsap near the Pierce County border was closed on Aug. 1 admist reports of a “nonovirus-type illness” stemming from visitors to the park. A number of people reported “gastroinestinal illnesses” after swimming in the water at Horseshoe Lake over the previous week. The beach was subsequently closed.

Kitsap Public Health has investigated 148 reported illnesses, though it is believed a number of them came from secondhand sources — a person who became ill from exposure to another sick person. Nonovirus is highly contagious and can continue to spread the illness for at least 48 hours after symptoms clear.

County health officials Wednesday confirmed a nonovirus infection in at least one individual who became sick after swimming in the lake. The swimming beach will remain closed until further notice to prevent further illnesses. An update will be provided on Monday, Aug. 13.

The public should report any illness if you visited Horseshoe Lake Park on July 28 or later and came down with symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting or stomach cramps. Contact Kitsap Public Health at 360-728-2205.

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