Valley family latest victims of Crypto outbreak; say they got it from Wet 'n' Wild water park

Posted at 5:06 PM, Aug 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-15 21:28:04-04

It's a nasty stomach virus that just won't go away.

The Cryptosporidium (or 'Crypto' for short) outbreak in Maricopa County has sickened more than 40 people in recent weeks.

Sarah Eldridge, a mother of two, says her family visited Wet 'n' Wild last month. Others have also said they were infected after a visit to the North Phoenix water park.

Within days, the family became sick.

Eldridge had her children, ages 3 and 4, tested for Cryptosporidium, a persistent virus that can live for days even in well-maintained, chlorinated pool water.

Eldridge says a doctor confirmed it was Crypto.

The illness has made its way around her home for the better part of a month now.

Eldridge says she is worried about social media posts she's seen.

Dozens of posts and comments from people with similar symptoms and stories of water park visits and struggling with flu-like symptoms for weeks.

"Half of what I'm seeing is people saying, 'I didn't even know that' [or] 'Did you hear about this, I heard about this,'" explained Eldridge.

Eldridge's daughter seems to be on the mend.

However, Eldridge wants others to get tested if they suspect they have Crypto.

The virus is spread through human feces, and people who suspect they have the virus are being told to stay out of bodies of water for at least two weeks after the symptoms have passed.

She fears many could be ill with Crypto and could be spreading it without knowing it.

Wet 'n Wild Phoenix has issued a statement regarding the situation:

At Wet 'n' Wild Phoenix, ensuring the public safety of our guests is our single greatest priority. In response to Maricopa County’s warning about the Cryptosporidium situation in the county, we continue to take precautionary and preemptive measures to keep our guests safe and to help spread awareness.  We continue to proactively conduct weekly hyper chlorination protocol and have added additional signage in the park educating guests on the steps for healthy swimming. The park remains in compliance with all CDC recommendations and Maricopa Country Environmental Services Department standards. We ask all guests to be responsible when partaking in water fun, whether at home or public recreation water facilities, by following these safety rules:

  • Stay out of the water if you have diarrhea, this includes splash pads, public and private pools, or lakes, for two weeks
  • Shower before you go in the water
  • Don’t go to the bathroom in the water. Use proper facilities
  • Don’t swallow the water
  • Contact your health care provider if you have any questions

Wet 'n' Wild is asking if anyone has specific concerns about the situation to contact them directly.

For more information on the virus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, click here.