Tap water bacteria found in New Zealand woman who died

Tests in New Zealand confirmed an elderly woman who died last week was suffering from the type of bacteria that tainted local tap water and sickened thousands of people in a small North Island town, officials said Friday.

Coroner Peter Ryan announced he had opened an investigation into the death of the 89-year-old woman in Havelock North. He said an autopsy revealed she had other health problems and it will take further testing to determine if the tainted water was a cause in her death.

An estimated 4,000 people in the town of 13,000 have contracted gastric illnesses since last week's outbreak of campylobacter bacteria. Seventeen people are being treated in a hospital, including two who are in critical condition.