U.S. Open 2017: E. coli traces found in drinking water provided to fans

Kevin Kaduk
Devil Ball Golf
Traces of E. coli were found at a hydration station at the U.S. Open (AP)
Traces of E. coli were found at a hydration station at the U.S. Open (AP)

Come for the world-class golf tournament, stay for the abdominal cramping.

Evidence of E. coli bacteria was found in drinking water being provided to fans at the U.S. Open at Erin Hills, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported on Thursday night. According to the Washington Ozaukee Health Department, the water in question came from a hydration station connected to a well near the 12th hole.

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E. coli bacteria can cause diarrhea, cramping, nausea and vomiting. The water line was shut off on Thursday morning but fans were able to consume the water on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The USGA responded to the report by announcing that free bottled water will be provided to fans at all stations for the rest of the tournament. That’ll end up being a lot of bottled water as temperatures on the shadeless course are expected to be in the mid-80s and above.

(It’s also here where we’ll make the joke that that USGA should also provide free beer to fans, just to be on the ultra safe side.)

“The safety and security of our guests is of paramount importance to the USGA,” association spokesman Jeff Altstadter said in the statement.

Erin Hills, a first-time U.S. Open host, has already played host to some strange storylines. A blimp crashed near the course during Thursday’s first-round and several players have criticized the height of the fescue that lines the fairways.

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