Williamsburg water park works to re-open after health scare - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Williamsburg water park works to re-open after health scare


The Price family of San Jose, Ill. was drawn to the water park outside the Amana Colonies as a potential spot for a future vacation.

"Where we live, they don't have an indoor water park, so we thought, well, let's check it out," said Leann Price.  

Right now, nobody is vacationing here because the popular Clarion hotel and Wasserbahn Water Park Resort voluntarily closed its doors after test samples of the water came back positive for E. Coli last Friday.

"Until we could get a new test back to prove that everything was clean, we took cautionary measures to make sure nobody would get ill," said Renee Driscoll, manager of Clarion hotel and Wasserbahn Water Park Resort.

Staff were required by law to pull water samples from their well water supply after a routine DNR test came back positive for a precursor of E. Coli.

Hotel staff believe they improperly took the sample which resulted in the tainted test results.

"Those tests are very sensitive. They have to be extremely careful taking those tests," Driscoll said.

"You have to be careful and be sanitary about it so that you don't yourself contaminate the sampling and get a bad result," Said Paul Brandt of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. 

Further tests have come back clean of E. Coli but still the damage may have been done.

Staff have been forced to turn business away for the last week resulting in a loss of more than $50,000.

The resort is now taking pre-emptive measures in making sure their guests are safe by switching over from their well-water source to a rural water system and taking the time to renovate the park in the meantime.

"We're satisfied that the rural water system provided good quality water," Brandt said.  

Whether the health scare will hurt future business remains to be seen.

Price says she's confident she and her family will be safe there.

"If they tell you it's safe to swim there, it's going to be safe to swim there," she said.


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