The swimming area at Hurricane Lake Estates has been closed due to an E. coli threat, Arkansas Health Department officials reported.
The Health Department also has closed the following other areas at this time: Beaverfork Lake in Conway, Cove Lake near Paris, Spring Lake in Yell County, Storm Creek in Phillips County and Camp Joshua in Benton.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, E. coli is a large and diverse group of bacteria. While some strains are harmless, others can make individuals ill. Some strains can cause diarrhea while others can cause urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other illnesses.
It is unknown at this time when the Hurricane Lake swimming area will reopen.
To avoid contracting E. coli, the CDC recommends washing hands thoroughly after using the bathroom or changing diapers.
Additionally, people should avoid swallowing water when swimming or playing in lakes, ponds, streams, swimming pools and backyard "kiddie" pools.