Foodborne Illness Outbreak Database

This database provides summaries of significant food and water related outbreaks occurring since 1984 caused by E. coli, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Campylobacter and other pathogens. Read more »

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1998 Outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 at Finley School, Washington

Eleven students in Finley School District No. 53 became ill after eating ground beef tacos that had been served in a school lunch. On inspection, food handling errors were noted in the school kitchen. No food handlers were known to be ill. There was evidence that the taco meat was undercooked, however the E.coli O157:H7 was never found in the ground beef. A younger sibling of one of the children became ill when her sister passed the infection to her. She was the sickest of all of the childen. The school district was found to be 100 percent liable for the food poisoning of the children.

  • Outbreak began:
  • October 1998
  • Affected Country:
  • US
  • Affected States/Territories:
  • Washington
  • Organism(s):
  • E. coli O157:H7
  • Vehicle(s):
  • Beef, Ground Beef
  • Molecular Results Available:
  • Unknown
  • Test Results:
  • None
  • Location(s):
  • School
  • Brand Name(s):
  • Product Subject to Recall:
  • No
  • Total ill:
  • 11
  • Number ill by Case Definition Known:
  • Yes
  • Number Laboratory Confirmed Cases:
  • 8
  • Number Probable Cases:
  • 3
  • Number Possible Cases:
  • 0
  • Anyone Hospitalized:
  • Yes
  • Number Hospitalized:
  • Unknown
  • Any Deaths:
  • No
  • Number Dead:
  • 0

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