Published: Sun, November 12, 2017
Culture&Arts | By Darrell Mcdonald

Disneyland shuts down 2 cooling towers after Legionnaires' disease cases

Disneyland shuts down 2 cooling towers after Legionnaires' disease cases

Disneyland has shut down and decontaminated two cooling towers following an outbreak of Legionnaires disease that sickened 12 people, nine of them guests or employees at the theme park in Anaheim, county health officials said on Saturday.

"Since that time, HCA staff have visited Park properties and worked with Disney to identify potential sources of Legionella", said Jessica Good, spokeswoman for the Orange County Health Agency.

The age range of those that contracted the disease during this concentrated period goes from 52 to 94.

Please adhere to our commenting policy to avoid being banned. Walt Disney Parks and Resorts chief medical officer Dr. Pamela Hymel noted in a statement on the matter that Disney was informed on October 27 about the potential link the park had to the recent Legionnaires' disease reports.

The discovery has led to the shutdown of two cooling towers at Disneyland, which nine of the 12 people visited during September.

An outbreak of Legionnaire's disease in Orange County has been traced to two cooling towers at Disneyland. Ten of the 11 ill were hospitalized, and one person died. "We have proactively shared this information with OCHCA and given our actions, they have indicated there is no longer any known risk associated with our facilities".

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According to a LA Times report, Disney reported on November 3 that routine testing had detected elevated levels of Legionella in two cooling towers a month earlier, and the towers had been disinfected.

Disney took the towers out of service again on Tuesday because the health agency required they remain down until test results verify they are free of Legionella contamination.

The bacteria commonly is found in water systems and poses no threat to humans at low levels.

When Legionella bacterial levels are high, it can be transmitted through inhalation of contaminated water vapor.

Symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches and headaches.

Legionnaires' disease is caused by Legionella bacteria that grows in water, and it can spread when small droplets get into the air, according to the CDC.

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