SOUTH BRONX — Less than 24 hours after health officials declared that "as far as cooling towers go, there is no safer place than the South Bronx," it was revealed that nine new sites tested positive for the bacteria born disease, including a mini mart on Third Avenue, the former site of a Conways store.
The discovery brings to 20 the number of places in the South Bronx that have tested positive, 14 of them in the area where most of the cases originated. A total of 119 people have been infected with Legionnaires Disease. While most have been treated and released, 12 have died.
On Tuesday Mayor de Blasio assured senior citizens in the Bronx that the worst outbreak of Legionnaires Disease to hit the city was ending and that there haven't been any new cases since August 3rd.
The disease is caused when certain bacteria is inhaled into the lungs. It is easily diagnosed and treated with antibiotics. It poses most risk to the elderly and people with underlying medical problems.
Despite reassurances that the worst is over, residents of the South Bronx are freshly alarmed with the discovery of more sites testing positive.
Officials from the Office of Emergency Management were on the scene Wednesday night. They said a decontamination team would be coming in overnight to clean the contaminated cooling towers.