* According to the Secretary of State’s office, Legionella bacteria was found in a humidifier that serves the south end of the Capitol Building, which is the House’s side. The humidifier, I’m told, has been shut off.
From a memo…
TO: All Capitol Complex State Employees
FROM: Mike Wojcik, Director of Physical Services, Secretary of State
Trey Childress, Deputy Governor & Chief Operating Officer
SUBJECT: Update on Water Testing for Legionella Bacteria
DATE: February 7, 2018
Reliable Environmental Solutions, Inc., in concert with the Secretary of State Physical Services Department, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), BRiC Partnership, LLC Consulting Engineers, the Capital Development Board (CDB) and the Office of the Architect of the Capitol (OAC) continue to test the water throughout the Capitol Complex. We provide you this update because thus far, of more than 300 preliminary water test results, four have indicated a positive reading for the presence of Legionella bacteria. Water testing is ongoing and final results are expected within two weeks.
As a result of the positive findings, remedial efforts are underway to drain and disinfect those areas that have preliminarily tested positive for the bacteria. Also, a water flushing program has been instituted throughout the Capitol Complex to maximize fresh water running through the pipes and fixtures. The Secretary of State Physical Services Department previously removed aerators and disabled the showers in the Capitol Complex. Removing aerators allows for a non-aerated and thinner stream of water for hand washing.
Legionella is the bacteria that can cause Legionnaires’ disease. We are not aware of any reports of Legionnaires’ disease among Springfield state employees or the general public. We have been advised by experts that the transmission of this bacteria in normal, day-to-day office operations is unlikely. This is an issue we continue to take seriously and the health and safety of state employees and visitors remains our top priority. We will pass along relevant updates as they become available.
For more information regarding Legionella bacteria, please visit the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website:http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/diseases-and-conditions/diseases-a-z-list/legionellosis.
Two of the four locations were in the cooling tower at the CMS Computer Center on West Adams St. The other was in the women’s restroom in the Howlett Building’s basement.