SCI Pittsburgh has discovered unacceptably high levels of Legionella bacteria in its water supply. Prison officials have stated that water in a cooling tower and in the medical building has been contaminated. Routine testing for the bacteria revealed its presence and steps are now being taken to avoid an outbreak.
Prison officials are distributing bottled drinking water to employees and inmates, and the showers in the medical buildings have been shut down. Showers in other buildings and cooking water remain unaffected, a spokesperson said.
No inmates or employees are yet known to have been diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease. Since Legionnaires’ disease is contracted through breathing in contaminated mist or vapor, rather than by contact with an infected person, isolation or quarantine of affected persons will not be necessary.
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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 for updates to this post or for more information on Legionnaires’ disease.