THE Legionnaire’s Disease outbreak that has claimed a life in Gibraltar could have come from three possible sources, its public health chief said Wednesday.
Director for Public Health Helen Carter said investigators are looking at different Legionnaire’s Disease outbreaks in each of the homes of the four people who caught it.
The other possibilities are that it came from ‘a common static source’ the victims walked past or ‘a common mobile source, such as a vehicle’, Gibraltar’s government said in a statement.
Minister for Health Gemma Arias Vasquez will chair the fourth Strategic Coordinating Group on December 15.
She hopes that by then samples taken from around the historic city of Gibraltar will shed more light on how four people were infected since September.
The outbreak claimed its first casualty Tuesday after a patient lost their fight against the airborne bacterial infection while being treated in hospital.
Dr Carter is now leading the investigation being carried out by the Environmental Agency,
She came up with her findings after interviewing those who had recovered from the bacterial infection, friends and family.
Carter examined the places they had visited and what they did during their incubation periods to come to her conclusion.
“Legionnaire’s Disease is caused by inhaling aerosols of water droplets containing the bacteria,” Dr Carter said.
“You can’t catch it from drinking water or from another person.”
She recommended people who have been away from home for more than seven days to run their taps for two minutes before using the water.
The public health director also urged people to use proper car screen wash rather than tap water to wipe their windscreens.
Minister for Health Gemma Arias-Vasquez said: “I am closely monitoring the progress of the investigation and I am in daily contact with the Director of Public Health regarding this.”
Legionnaire’s Disease often claims older victims, especially smokers, causing shortness of breath that can lead to pneumonia and even death.