- Posted April 3, 2013 by
San Antonio, Texas
Danger in the Water: Surprising Sources of Legionella Bacteria
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS --
The 2011 outbreak of legionella at the Playboy Mansion spotlights the unseen dangers of this often-prevalent bacterium. Other fatal outbreaks, similar to a Pittsburg veterans’ hospital last year, demonstrate a need for more awareness regarding this health threat.
Commonly known as the cause of Legionnaire’s Disease, legionella is often found naturally in freshwater ponds and creeks. However, the bacteria can also reside in many types of domestic water sources, including cooling towers, hot water heaters, air-conditioning systems, shower heads and spas. The most alarming outbreaks, such as the one at the Playboy Mansion, often come from surprising sources. In 2012, three people died after contracting legionella from a decorative fountain in the lobby of the Chicago’s JW Marriot Hotel.
Most people assume that legionella infections result from ingestion of contaminated water; however, it can also be contracted by breathing in small water droplets from mist or vapor that has been contaminated with the legionella bacteria. Symptoms include fever, coughing, headaches and gastrointestinal problems, such as vomiting and diarrhea. Legionella is especially dangerous to those with compromised immune systems, such as the elderly.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, the best prevention for legionella is proper maintenance of water systems. Frequent water quality testing and treatment is essential to keeping the public safe from this dangerous infection.
Learn more: http://legionella-beheersplannen.nl