The Florida Department of Health has alerted the LA Fitness in Ocoee, a suburb of Orlando, that three gym users have been sickened with Legionnaires’ disease, according to numerous news reports. It has yet to be determined if the infected individuals contracted the disease at the facility, but management is cooperating fully with the investigation by state health officials.
A person catches Legionnaires’ disease – a serious type of pneumonia caused by the Legionella bacteria – by inhaling microscopic water droplets in the form of mist or vapor. The Legionella bacteria are found primarily in human-made, warm-water environments.
The outbreak is the second experienced by an LA Fitness facility in the past six months. In December 2016, two members of a facility in Long Island, NY, were infected with Legionnaires’ disease, and officials shut down the pool, pool area, and spa after water samples showed positive for the Legionella bacteria. One of the infected members filed a $2.5 million lawsuit against the club in March.