Woman's body found in Lake Anna as VA health officials investigate bacterial outbreak

New details are emerging after a woman’s body was found floating in Lake Anna in Virginia. 

It’s the third body found in the lake in less than two months and the discovery comes as the Virginia Department of Health says it cannot guarantee the safety of people swimming in the lake due to existing bacteria.

Spotsylvania County Fire and Rescue recovered the woman’s body from the lake and the investigation into what happened to her is ongoing. 

At the same time, state health officials are wrapping up their investigation into a bacterial outbreak at Lake Anna that sickened 25 people — 23 of whom had direct exposure to Lake Anna.

The state’s health department says they have conducted several rounds of testing and they’re awaiting final results.

They tell FOX 5 low levels of fecal bacteria were discovered in the lake but so far test results do not show if there are bacteria that can cause illness in people.

RELATED: E. coli outbreak at Lake Anna: 20 swimmers infected, 9 hospitalized

The outbreak has prompted state health leaders to warn those in high-risk groups, including children 5 years old and younger and adults over 65 years old, to avoid the lakes and rivers. 

"Almost all of the cases had infection with a type of bacteria called Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli — E.Coli," said Brandy Darby, Director of Surveillance and Investigation with the Virginia Department of Health. "So this is a type of bacteria that when it’s ingested, so perhaps people who are in the lake, they splashed and they got some water in their face or their mouth became infected and it can cause really severe abdominal cramps, diarrhea, sometimes bloody diarrhea and vomiting." 

Even so, it’s not stopping those hoping to hit the water this holiday weekend.

On top of the ongoing bacterial concerns, the woman was the third body pulled from the lake in less than two months — although the other deaths are confirmed drownings.  

The Louisa County Sheriff’s Office said the woman's body was found in the main part of Lake Anna, in Spotsylvania County, around 2:15 p.m. Saturday. The remains were taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the identity and cause of death.

FOX 5 was told a woman went missing several weeks after possibly drowning earlier this spring and the Louisa County Sheriff's Office has been searching for that woman. We did reach out to them about the case and are awaiting their response. 

It comes less than two months after a father and son tragically drowned in the lake in the area of Carrs Bridge Road.

Deputies were called to the area just after 1 p.m. on May 25. They were told that the teen’s father had jumped into the water attempting to rescue his son. Soon after, witnesses saw the 42-year-old dad struggling in the water before losing sight of him shortly after the 14-year-old victim went under.

Officials are continuing to issue safety warnings as the investigation into the water quality and the woman’s death are ongoing.