Health officials identify Johnsburg Walmart as potential Legionnaires' source

  • The Illinois Department of Public Health said officials are investigating a cluster of Legionnaires' disease cases in Lake and McHenry counties, and the agency identified Walmart in Johnsburg as "one common potential exposure."

    The Illinois Department of Public Health said officials are investigating a cluster of Legionnaires' disease cases in Lake and McHenry counties, and the agency identified Walmart in Johnsburg as "one common potential exposure." Associated Press

 
Updated 10/27/2018 8:04 AM

The Illinois Department of Public Health said officials are investigating a cluster of Legionnaires' disease cases in Lake and McHenry counties, and the agency identified Walmart in Johnsburg as "one common potential exposure."

In a news release on Friday, the agency said Walmart has taken action, including turning off the produce water sprayers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

State officials said they have been working closely with health officials in Lake and McHenry counties.

Legionnaires' disease is a serious lung infection contracted by breathing in small droplets of water containing Legionella bacteria. Outbreaks most commonly occur around buildings that have complex water systems, such as hotels, hospitals, long-term care facilities and cruise ships.

It can grow and spread in hot tubs, cooling towers, hot water tanks, large plumbing systems and decorative fountains.

People 50 and older are at increased risk from exposure to the bacteria, as are current or former smokers, those suffering from chronic diseases or people with weakened immune systems.

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