American Airlines at the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport said that it tested water samples at four of its maintenance hangars after an employee developed Legionnaires’ disease. The findings revealed varying levels of Legionella bacteria in eight shower heads, as well as some faucets and water fountains within those hangars. The employee has since recovered, but it is unclear at this time whether or not the bacteria found at the hangars were responsible for the employee’s illness.
Vinny Taneja, Public Health Director of Tarrant County, stated that his agency is working with American Airlines to discuss recommendations to address the Legionella issue such as adding filters on all showers and faucets, planning to test the filters repeatedly, replacing the filters every 30 days, and providing bottled water to employees. American Airlines posted a memo on Friday for its employees, stating that it will begin to host meetings with Dr. David Krause, an expert on Legionella bacteria, to address any employees’ concerns.
Tarrant County has been home to 16 cases of Legionnaires’ disease this year. This in combination with the fact that the bacteria found within the hangars have not been localized raises suspicion that the bacteria may have entered the hangars through an outside water source. American Airlines has enlisted the help of local authorities to determine same.
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Jules Zacher is an attorney in Philadelphia who has tried Legionnaires’ disease cases across the U.S. Please visit LegionnaireLawyer.com again for updates.