Iconic Environmental Advocate Wants Better Strategies for Controlling Legionnaires' Diesease Outbreaks

During an event in Albany last week, the Alliance to Prevent Legionnaires’ Disease and the Allergy & Asthma Network joined iconic environmental advocate Erin Brockovich, who warned of a public water “crisis” if state and New York City health regulators don’t re-think their strategies for dealing with the issue.

The Alliance to Prevent Legionnaires’ presented its assessment on the “misguided” state regulations put in place after a large outbreak of the disease in the summer of 2015, mostly concentrated in the south Bronx, according to a press release.

According to the Alliance’s report, “the EPA believes that if Giardia and viruses are inactivated… legionella will also be controlled.” But that policy, they say, is “a serious weakness of the system.” Legionella bacteria grows easily in water distribution systems, typically in the biofilm on the walls of aging pipes that can be found in water systems throughout the state.

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