Multiple Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease Reported Near Hampton Beach
The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services says it's identified four reported cases of Legionella pneumonia (also known as Legionnaire's Disease). The DHHS says those infected likely acquired the potentially serious bacterial pneumonia at the end of July or early August, in the area of Ashworth Avenue, between Island Path and H Street in Hampton.
State officials are currently investigating the source of the infections, which is generally from inhaling aerosol droplets of water, which is contaminated with the bacteria. Those sources can include showers, faucets, misters, hot tubs, cooling towers and fountains. It is NOT spread by drinking or swimming waters.
The NH Department of Health and Human Services urges those that are at an increased risk for severe disease from Legionella to consider postponing their trip to the above mentioned section of Hampton.
People who are at increased risk of getting sick include:
- People 50 years or older
- Current or former smokers
- People with chronic lung disease
- People with weakened immune systems
- People who take drugs that can weaken their immune systems (after a transplant operation or chemotherapy)
- People with underlying illnesses such as diabetes, kidney failure, or liver failure