An earlier post of ours discussed the discovery of Legionella at the Illinois State Capitol complex. In our initial discussion, it was found that one out of the ten locations which were tested was found to have Legionella and furthermore, was at the Armory, which was vacant and uninhabited. Now, testing appears to suggest a larger incident occurring. According to state officials, preliminary testing shows Legionella bacteria being found in numerous other locations around the Illinois State Capitol complex.
As the (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports, the Illinois Secretary of State’s office sent out a memo on Wednesday stating that there were in fact four positive readings out of over 300 water tests done throughout the complex. In response, state officials are saying that they’re both draining and disinfecting locations where positive test results were found. In addition, state official have also begun a water flushing program to receive fresh water and run it through the current infected pipes as well as fixtures.
As it stands now, state officials are stating that they’re not familiar with any Legionnaires’ disease cases among their employees or the general public as a whole. As such, the Illinois Department of Public Health states that the Capitol building is still safe for employees to go to and to work at.
Now clearly this investigation is still early in its process and furthermore, if truly no individuals end up contracting Legionnaires’ disease, then perhaps officials were in fact able to stop and prevent a sporadic case or outbreak from occurring right in time. That said, between this incident and the incident currently under investigation at the Quincy, IL Veterans Home, it does seem as though it is time for some kind of holistic review of how the state currently operates its potable water distribution systems and overall water safety. These incidents may thus represent a catalyst for such a review.
Jules Zacher is an attorney in Philadelphia who has tried Legionnaires’ disease cases across the U.S. Please visit LegionnaireLawyer.com again for updates.