Tough Mudder race linked to pathogens, again

There are a few guys on my hockey team who have taken up endurance mud running as a way to work off the chicken sandwiches and beer we consume every Monday night. A couple of them ran the Tough Mudder in South Carolina last year and are planning on doing it again this year in the Charlotte area.TMSplash

From the organizer’s website, “Tough Mudder events are hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle courses designed by British Special Forces to test your all around strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie. Triathlons, marathons, and other lame-ass mud runs are more stressful than fun. Not Tough Mudder. As hardcore as our courses are, we meet you at the finish line with a beer, a laugh, and a rockin’ live band.”

The site lists a set of obstacles with names like Arctic Enema, Dirty Ballerina and Kiss of Mud.

Last year, a Tough Mudder in Scotland was linked to at least three cases of E. coli O157.

According to WILX 10 in Lansing, MI a recent Mudder race has been linked to norovirus.

The Tough Mudder event is leaving people with a lot more than sore muscles.

At least a dozen people and probably many more who attended the competition at Michigan International Speedway last weekend are reporting symptoms of norovirus and upper respiratory issues.

The Michigan Department of Community Health is handling the case with the Lenawee County Health Department.

This entry was posted in E. coli, Food Safety Culture, Norovirus, Wacky and Weird and tagged , by Ben Chapman. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ben Chapman

Dr. Ben Chapman is a professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University. As a teenager, a Saturday afternoon viewing of the classic cable movie, Outbreak, sparked his interest in pathogens and public health. With the goal of less foodborne illness, his group designs, implements, and evaluates food safety strategies, messages, and media from farm-to-fork. Through reality-based research, Chapman investigates behaviors and creates interventions aimed at amateur and professional food handlers, managers, and organizational decision-makers; the gate keepers of safe food. Ben co-hosts a biweekly podcast called Food Safety Talk and tries to further engage folks online through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and, maybe not surprisingly, Pinterest. Follow on Twitter @benjaminchapman.