Drinking Water Contamination

Queensland Health has launched an investigation after reports of a gastro outbreak at the resort.
ABC News: Ashleigh Stevenson

Holiday makers struck down with vomiting and diarrhoea after visiting Tangalooma off the coast of Brisbane are angry with how the popular island resort handled the drinking water contamination.

Health authorities are investigating the source of the drinking water contamination after more than 50 people fell ill with gastroenteritis on Moreton Island in a matter of days.

A spokeswoman for Tangalooma Island Resort said initial tests on the water by authorities returned positive samples of E.coli (Escherichia) bacteria.

“Some of our guests and staff have reported illness consistent with nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach cramps and a general feeling of being unwell,” she said.

Dr Kari Jarvinen from the Metro South Public Health Unit said further testing was being undertaken.

“All guests and staff have been advised to boil their drinking water or use commercially supplied bottled water until the issue is resolved,” Dr Jarvinen said.

“Anyone on the resort or anyone who has recently visited the resort should be alert for symptoms of gastroenteritis and seek medical advice if they have concerns.”

‘Don’t drink the water’

Peter Morris and his partner Samantha had vomiting and diarrhoea after spending a week at the resort.

He said she became quite ill on Saturday night after they had checked out and returned to the Gold Coast.

“I tried very hard to get an after-hours doctor here at Broadbeach and ended up getting an ambulance and she was taken to Robina Hospital,” Mr Morris said.

“She was definitely worse than me and she’s got a medical condition that means that if she can’t take her medicine orally it becomes life-threatening. So she had to have injections.”

Mr Morris said he had heard nothing from the resort despite management saying it had contacted 3,000 guests following the outbreak.

“They have made no attempt to contact me or my friends and they have our email and mobile details,” he said.

“They’re very bad at communication.”

David James, the director of the resort, said staff were contacting 3,000 people who had visited or stayed at the resort over the past few weeks.

To read more: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-11-05/bacterial-contamination-hits-tangalooma-resort-dozens-fall-ill/11670916

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