Advisory issued at Lake Boutin for high E. coli levels - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Advisory issued at Lake Boutin for high E. coli levels

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CAPE GIRARDEAU COUNTY, MO (KFVS) - Are you ever concerned about what's in the water when you visit lakes during the summer months?

It may not be a common thought before charging in to cool off on a hot day, but maybe it should be.

An advisory has been issued for the beach at Trail of Tears State Park after high amounts of E. coli was found in the water.

Hillary Corjos was ready for a fun day on the lake on Wednesday with friends and family.

But a few hours into their getaway at Lake Boutin she found out why a sign saying "Swimming is not Recommended" is posted by the parking lot.

"We were excited we were going to go to the beach and spend time with friends. We had some friends go with us. And you know let the kids free and they went and ran in the water and splashed and played and just had a great time," said Corjos.

But then things changed.

A park ranger came up and told them E. coli bacteria measured in the water was more than double the acceptable standard.

And so the moms quickly reacted.

"So instantly. We weren't quiet. We weren't trying to hide or be discreet about anything," Corjos said. "We just hollered for the kids out of the water. Out of the water let's go. Time to get out. So we stripped them down and cleaned them up and tried to get out of there to bathe them as quickly as we could."

The water at the lake is tested for E. coli levels every Monday, but the results don't come back until Wednesday.

With two young kids, Hillary said a million questions ran through her head.

"Are they gonna get sick? What's gonna happen? How serious is this? So many things went through our head at the same time," said Corjos.

A call to the pediatrician calmed some fears and then Hillary went online to find out more about the bacteria and ways to prevent infection.

That's where she learned more about activated charcoal.

The pills have the ability to absorb toxins from the body.

So far, neither of her kids have had any E. coli symptoms.

Still, she does have this word of advice for other parents before they hit the beach.

"Definitely go online and check the websites for the local parks and lakes and swimming areas. Just be aware," she said.

Other families were out swimming on Thursday.

Most of them did not see the signs and were unaware of the E. coli levels.

One complaint many people expressed was that the sign near the water is actually in a corner off the lake and not on the beach.

So be aware if you're heading to any state parks for the remainder of the summer.

Click here for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources list of state park beaches.

No word yet on how long the advisory at Lake Boutin will be in effect.

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