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E. coli levels prompt warnings at some Kenosha County beaches

KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Health officials are warning about E. coli levels at some beaches in Kenosha County. 

According to the county's website, the beach at Paddock Hooker Lake Association on Paddock Lake is closed due to water quality. Beach-goers at Lake George at 101st and Silver Lake are also cautioned about the quality of the water. 

E. coli are found in feces of animals, including humans. E. coli bacteria do not necessarily make people sick, but they do indicate that other, harmful microbes are likely to be present. 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends the E. coli maximum of 235 cfu / 100 ml (colony forming units) for a single water sample. The State of Wisconsin adheres to this standard. 

Kenosha County says their criteria for closing a beach is whenever the level of E. coli in the beach water sample exceeds 1000 cfu / 100 ml. If the E. coli level falls between 235 cfu / 100 ml and 1000 cfu / 100 ml, a yellow "Caution" sign is posted stating that the beach is under a water quality advisory. 

When a beach is closed due to contamination, it is tested daily until the standard of less than 235 E. coli/100 ml sample is achieved. The green "Water Quality Notice" sign will then be posted when the water condition is good. 

To check beach conditions in Kenosha County, please click here.


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