Health Department investigating NYPD officer with possible Legionnaires'

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Tim Fleischer has more from East Harlem.

The attention of the Health Department has turned to an East Harlem precinct after being made aware of an officer's illness.

The Health Department, in a statement says it is 'working closely with the NYPD to investigate one case of Legionnaires' Disease involving a police officer, and potentially associated with the 23rd Precinct in Harlem.'

The Health Department was notified of the case Saturday night and that the officer is recovering in a hospital outside of the city.

Legionella bacteria can be found in cooling towers and water systems, health officials point out, including plumbing systems.

RELATED: Who is at risk for Legionnaires' Disease?

"Preliminary results of some tests, conducted at the 23rd Precinct station house by an independent contractor on behalf of the PBA, which report to indicate traces of bacteria associated with Legionnaire's disease. These results are currently being further reviewed."

The Health Department is now recommending that officers of staff not take hot showers in the precinct, but they can drink cold water from the tap.

The NYPD says a new cooling tower was installed in May of this year, but it has so far not been activated, and they have now shut down the hot water system in the building.

Health Department officials stress that there is no public health risk to the larger community.

Following an outbreak in 2015, the Health Department established new regulations for inspecting buildings and reporting Legionnaire's cases.

On average, health officials say 200-400 cases of Legionnaires' are reported each year in the city.
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legionnaires' diseasenypdEast HarlemNew York City
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