Two men died and a third man became severely ill after contracting Legionnaires' disease at a medical facility in South Whitehall Township in 2013 according to a lawsuit recently filed in Lehigh County Court. The alleged source of the disease was bacteria found in an indoor fountain. Health officials had previously concentrated their efforts on other fountains inside and outside the building, plus the building's cooling system.
One of the men who died had twice visited the building containing the fountain in August of 2013 and began feeling ill shortly thereafter. He was admitted to a hospital suffering from pneumonia, was diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease and died a few days later, the lawsuit says. The other man who died also visited the building about the same time and was also near the fountain. About a week later, he was admitted to a hospital and was diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease. He died in March of 2014. An Allentown man also contracted the disease but survived.