Cooling towers test positive for Legionnaires'

The affected towers have undergone a decontamination process.

The affected towers have undergone a decontamination process. (7/31/15)

THE BRONX - City health officials are calming concerns over a Legionnaires' outbreak in the South Bronx after two cooling towers tested positive for the bacteria. 

The water cooling towers are at Lincoln Hospital and Concourse Plaza on 161st Street, the shopping center located across the street from the Bronx County Hall of Justice. However, officials now say that the tower at the hospital is not connected to the outbreak. 

Affected neighborhoods include Highbridge, Morrisania, Hunts Point and Mott Haven. 

Officials stress that Legionnaires' cannot be spread from person to person and that the city's water supply is safe to drink. They also say that no patients from Lincoln Hospital contracted the disease. 

The towers have been flushed and disinfected, and crews are still testing others on the tops of buildings for the legionella bacteria, which causes the disease, as they search for the source. 

According to health officials, 46 cases of Legionnaires' have been diagnosed since July 10, and two of those people have died. 

Bronx residents should seek medical attention immediately if they experience any symptoms, which include fever, cough, chills and muscle aches. Legionnaires' is treated with antibiotics.

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