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Legionnaires’ disease bacteria found in Guildford Mall cooling towers: Fraser Health

Click to play video: 'Legionnaires’ disease outbreak leads to Walmart closure'
Legionnaires’ disease outbreak leads to Walmart closure
WATCH: Legionnaires' disease outbreak leads to Walmart closure – Sep 7, 2018

Fraser Health has now confirmed tests for Legionnaires’ disease bacteria have come back positive in the cooling towers at the Guildford Town Centre Mall and the adjoining Walmart.

Officials say a cluster of Legionnaires’ disease was detected a few days ago in the Surrey neighbourhood.

There have been seven confirmed cases so far.

READ MORE: Officials investigating ‘cluster’ of Legionnaires’ disease cases in Surrey

The Guildford Town Centre Mall is open but the Walmart has now been closed for an unspecified amount of time.

The Fraser Health Authority is also advising anyone who has developed pneumonia-like symptoms and who is at higher risk — people such as smokers, the elderly or those with chronic lung conditions — to visit a doctor.

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WATCH: Health officials investigating ‘cluster’ of Legionnaires’ disease cases

Click to play video: 'Cluster of Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease reported in Surrey’s Guildford area'
Cluster of Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease reported in Surrey’s Guildford area

Symptoms can include cough, fatigue, fever, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Fraser Health Medical Health Officer Dr. Aamir Bharmal said last week.

“People who are exposed to it, specifically people who are at high risk to it, may start to see symptoms within two to 10 days,” said Bharmal.

READ MORE: Fraser Health issues warning after suspected case of measles at Maple Ridge Secondary

Anyone who was in Surrey’s Guildford neighbourhood in the past 10 days and is now showing symptoms should also inform their doctor, the health authority added.

Legionnaires’ disease is caused by a bacteria known as Legionella, which is commonly found in the natural environment, including fresh water, groundwater and the soil.

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It can, in extreme cases, be fatal.

-With files from Simon Little

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