Legionella tests return positive at Capitol

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – Testing revealed the presence of a potentially deadly bacteria in the Capitol Complex.

A Wednesday email sent to state employees says leaders conducted 300 water tests and found four positive readings of Legionella. The bacteria is known to cause Legionnaires’ disease, which killed 12 people who stayed at the Quincy Veterans Home in 2015. Another case was discovered in the home in November.

“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,” Director of Physical Services Mike Wojcik said in the email. “Also, a water flushing program has been instituted throughout the Capitol Complex to maximize fresh water running through the pipes and fixtures.”

Wojcik says his department already went through steps to make the water safer by taking out aerators and disabling showers in the complex.

The email statement called the possible spread of the bacteria in the complex officers “unlikely”, while adding that state leaders have not heard any reports of Legionnaires’ disease from state workers in the complex or the public.

They say final testing results should be available in about two weeks. 

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