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E. coli outbreak investigated at Memo’s Mexican Restaurant in U-District


King County Public Health said it is investigating an E. coli outbreak associated with Memo’s Mexican Food restaurant in the University District.

The outbreak is unrelated to the one that sickened at least six people after they ate at the Matador restaurant in Ballard.

>> Read about Matador cases here 

Here’s a short timeline of when people were sickened after eating at Memo’s:

  • The King County resident ate there on both 8/18 and 8/24, while the other Washington resident (non-King County) ate there on 8/24.
  • Public Health received the first report of illness on 8/31.

Both people have recovered.

Laboratory testing – via molecular fingerprinting – determined that both persons had the same strain of STEC bacteria, a strain that has not been seen before in King County

To read more about Shiga-toxin producing E. coli, which is also called STEC, click here.

The strain from this cluster is different from the one that recently affected several patrons of the Matador restaurant in Ballard. Officials said these clusters do not appear to be related to each other.

Factors that may have contributed to the foodborne illness outbreak at Memo’s included improper cooling, cold holding, reheating of potentially hazardous food and the potential for cross-contamination.

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