The deaths are from Arkansas (1), Minnesota (2), and NY (1).
Most of the people who recently became ill ate romaine lettuce when lettuce from the Yuma (AZ) growing region was likely still available in stores, restaurants, or in peoples' homes.
To avoid E. coli infections, experts advise thoroughly cooking meat, avoiding unpasteurized dairy products and juices, avoiding swallowing water while swimming and washing hands regularly. "That's really the concern at this point".
Brendan Flaherty, a lawyer who is representing clients sickened in this outbreak, said, "Given the high number of hospitalizations, HUS cases, and deaths in this outbreak, consumers should continue to ask where the romaine lettuce they are buying comes from". Eighty-nine people have been hospitalized.
Some of the tainted lettuce tied to the massive E. coli outbreak in the United States was from Imperial County.
Although this particular lettuce shouldn't be a risk anymore, E. coli is nearly always a danger, and steps can be taken to avoid getting ill.
California and Pennsylvania are recording the most cases. The growing season in the Yuma, Ariz., region, which produced the contaminated lettuce, ended April 16.
The FDA said it may take a while to find out how the bacteria got into so much of the romaine lettuce supply.
Romaine lettuce in a supermarket. "Trucks all across the country were dumping romaine", Drew McDonald, vice president of quality and food safety at Taylor Farms, told the WSJ.
But in early spring, Yuma is the main source for lettuce sold across much of the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration officials said, however, that romaine now for sale on grocery shelves is safe to eat. Please note that class action lawsuits are typically not appropriate for outbreak victims because these types of cases are very unique.