Disneyland Is Source Of Legionnaire's Disease Outbreak

Legionnaires' disease outbreak at Disneyland sickens nine visitors

Disneyland voluntarily shut down two water cooling towers in one of its backstage areas after discovering they contained high levels of the bacteria that causes Legionnaire's, according to the Orange County Register.

The other three are Orange County residents who didn't visit Disneyland but live or travelled to Anaheim, reported Orange County Health Care Agency spokeswoman Jessica Good, Friday night in response to earlier Voice of OC questions.

The person who died had "additional health issues", doctors said.

Case ages range from 52-94.

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. "These towers were treated with chemicals that destroy the bacteria and are now shut down".

There haven't been any new cases linked to Anaheim since September, the agency said.

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The outbreak was traced to the convention hotel's air conditioning system, and Legionnaire's disease has since been sourced to contaminated water or mist.

Legionnaires' disease appear to be on the rise, with Orange County reporting more than 55 cases this year.

This type of excessive lung infection is caused by inhaling the bacteria and not spread by person-to-person contact. The health agency said there is no ongoing risk to the public and no other cases have been reported, although they cautioned public health officials to be aware of the situation. While many people have no symptoms, it can cause serious pneumonia and prove risky to those with lung or immune system problems.

Legionnaires' disease is a progressive pneumonia with a 2-10 day incubation period.

Disneyland Park informed health officials this month that elevated levels of Legionella had been identified in two of its 18 towers, which were then treated and disinfected. Soon after, an order was issued by the health agency requiring preventing Disney from reopening the towers before health officials verified that they were free from Legionella contamination.

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