Disneyland shuts down 2 cooling towers after guests contract Legionnaires' disease

Disneyland shuts down 2 cooling towers after guests contract Legionnaires' disease

Disneyland shuts down 2 cooling towers after guests contract Legionnaires' disease

Disneyland has shut down two cooling towers at its theme park after a dozen cases, including one death, from Legionnaire's disease - a serious respiratory illness caused by the Legionella bacteria - were reported in Anaheim.

The victims were aged between 52 and 94.

Ten were hospitalized and one person "with additional health issues" died, according to health officials.

According to the OCHCA, the Legionnaire's disease exposure period ranged from September 12 to September 27, Hymel said, adding that Disney thoroughly reviewed all regular water testing for the resort, "including work performed by contracted third-party experts", and "implemented additional redundant testing of other cooling towers on our property".

Concern over a recent Legionnaire's disease outbreak in Orange County has prompted The Happiest Place on Earth® to take action.

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Nine people contracted Legionnaires' disease after visiting Disneyland in September, a Disneyland spokesperson confirmed Saturday.

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. But in large concentrations, often due to stagnant or improperly sanitized water systems, the bacteria can be transmitted through inhaling contaminated water vapor.

"There is no known ongoing risk associated with this outbreak", the agency said in a statement.

Dr Pamela Hymel, chief medical officer for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, said: "On October 27, we learned from OCHA of increased Legionnaires' disease cases in Anaheim". Those towers were chemically treated and shut down to eliminate further infection. It typically only afflicts those over the age of 50, or who have compromised immune systems or lung damage.

Health officials subsequently issued an order that the towers remain shut down until they are verified to be free from contamination. On Nov. 1, more testing and disinfection was performed and the towers were brought back into service on Nov. 5.

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