This afternoon, state public health officials released some preliminary findings in their ongoing investigation into the Legionnaires’ Disease outbreak associated with the NC Mountain State Fair.
Based on interviews with people who visited the fair, compared to people who did not get sick, those who did get sick were much more likely to:
– Have visited the Davis Event Center while at the fair.
– Report having walked by the hot tub displays.
– Have visited during the latter half of the fair.
In addition, early results from laboratory testing of environmental samples have identified Legionella bacteria in one water sample taken from the Davis Event Center, from a hand washing sink in a women’s restroom. Results are still pending from other samples taken as part of this investigation.
State health officials visited the WNC Agricultural Center on 9/25 and 9/27 and did not identify any significant sources of aerosolized water on the site. Very little aerosolized water is created from hand washing sinks, toilets and other currently operating water sources at the Agricultural Center, meaning the risk of exposure to Legionella is low.
As of Wednesday, October 2, a total of 124 laboratory-confirmed cases of Legionnaire’s disease associated with the North Carolina Mountain State Fair have been reported to the NC Division of Public Health. Those cases occurred among residents of 17 counties and South Carolina; three of those cases were Transylvania County residents. There have been 80 hospitalizations and 1 death. Additional possible cases are still under investigation.