Quebec City legionnaires’ disease outbreak kills 2 more

August 21, 2012CANADA - Two more people are dead, amid of a total of 40 infections, in an outbreak of legionnaires’ disease in Quebec City, public health officials said Monday.That’s more than twice the number of cases that had previously been disclosed, and surpasses the last outbreak in the city, in 1995, when 12 people fell ill and one died. Officials didn’t name or provide details about the two new fatalities, which bring the death toll to three. The first to die was an 88-year-old Quebec City woman. Dr. François Desbiens, the director of public health for the Quebec City region, said authorities have begun inspecting downtown buildings that use a cooling tower as part of their ventilation. Public-health officials had already sent 2,700 letters to building owners in the downtown core asking them to clean their cooling systems, but the emergence of new cases — a dozen since Friday afternoon — is prompting the inspections. “We’re still seeing cases despite the fact that we’ve asked building owners to take steps,” Desbiens said. “So we’ve decided to go further and investigate every tower again, and for those that haven’t had maintenance, to identify them, to inspect them to take a water sample. And to order a disinfection.” Legionnaires, also known as legion fever, is a flu-like pneumonia that affects people with lung problems or weak immune systems. It is caused by bacteria that thrive in warm temperatures and can breed in the stagnant water of cooling towers, before spreading in the mist released by those systems. –CBC
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One Response to Quebec City legionnaires’ disease outbreak kills 2 more

  1. Chuck says:

    Yes, this is a reminder why you shouldn’t eat or drink coffee, etc. while dining “al fresco” underneth the urban air conditioners in cities while you partake in your drink or meal on the sidewalk or patio where above you the old air conditioner is churning away….

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