A group of at least four cases of Legionnaire's disease, a potentially serious bacterial pneumonia, was announced in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire's public health officials on Saturday.
The four people were probably infected in late July or early August in the area of Ashworth Avenue, between Island Path and H Street, officials said in a statement.
People most susceptible to the disease, such as those who are 50 years and older, or who have smoking or conditions such as Chronic lung disease is advised to shun the area of the popular beach town.
The researchers are looking for the source of the infection and possible new cases. The disease, also known as Legionella pneumonia, is usually spread by inhalation of water droplets contaminated with the bacteria.
"Legionella is a serious infection," said Lisa Morris, director of the New Hampshire Division of Public Health Services. "We want to make sure that the public is aware of the potential risk of this disease, so that each person can decide for themselves whether to visit the area in the best interests of their health."
Symptoms may include coughing, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches and headaches. The infection is not spread by swimming or drinking water, but can come from showers, hot tubs, decorative fountains, and other sources of airborne air.
People who visited the area and developed pneumonia-like symptoms within 1
Lucas Phillips can be reached at [email protected]