People Contract Legionnaire's Disease After Visiting Disneyland

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About a dozen people in the Anaheim, CA area, or visitors to the area in September were diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease, according to Orange County health officials.

Case ages range from 52-94.

Please adhere to our commenting policy to avoid being banned. Ten were hospitalized and one person "with additional health issues" died, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times. In a statement, Dr. Pamela Hymel, chief medical officer for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, said Disneyland learned about the Legionnaires' cases on October 27.

Nine people have contracted Legionnaire's disease after visiting Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif.

Disneyland officials said they have worked with the county health care agency and treated the towers with chemicals that destroy the bacteria.

Orange County health officials say they have been notified of eight cases of the disease in the month of September.

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The county health agency alerted health care providers to keep an eye on anyone who visited Anaheim or Disneyland and contracted Legionnaires' disease before November 7.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Legionella is a type of bacterium found naturally in freshwater environments. The towers were taken out of service November 1, disinfected, went back in operation on November 5 but were shut down again Tuesday and will remain offline until tests confirm they are free from contamination, according to the park and the county health agency.

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.

Legionnaires' can cause severe pneumonia. The towers underwent more testing and disinfection on November 1 and were running again four days later.

People ages 50 or older, or those with weakened immune systems, are most at risk for the illness. But in large concentrations, often due to stagnant or improperly sanitized water systems, the bacteria can be transmitted through inhaling contaminated water vapor.