Hampton NH resort ordered to address Legionella problem


Our partners at NECN report the order comes just days after 14 people who were in a specific area of Hampton contracted Legionnaire's disease.

Fraser Health doesn't say how many people are affected, but says it is looking into the source of a cluster of cases in Surrey's Guildford neighbourhood.

Patients can contract Legionnaires' disease, a serious type of pneumonia, when they breathe in small, airborne droplets of water that contain the bacteria, which can grow in a building's water system. At this point, officials aren't suggesting at-risk people to avoid Guildford.

The New Hampshire state Department of Health and Human Services ( NH DHHS) is ordering the Sands Resort in Hampton, NH to immediately remediate Legionella bacteria found on its premises.

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New Hampshire averages about 32 cases of Legionnaires' disease each year. Most people get better with early treatment, although they may need to be hospitalized.

Symptoms, which usually show up two to 10 days after exposure to the bacteria, include cough, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches, and headaches.

The health department's order is in effect until officials are "satisfied" with remediation steps at the hotel to decrease the transmission of the bacteria to the public. The Public Health Service of Canada points out it can not be transmitted between people.

Officials said symptoms of Legionnaires' are similar to the common cold or flu.