On Air Now

Listen Now

Weather

clear-day
81°
Clear
H 91° L 68°
  • clear-day
    81°
    Current Conditions
    Clear. H 91° L 68°
  • clear-day
    91°
    Today
    Clear. H 91° L 68°
  • clear-day
    91°
    Tomorrow
    Sunny. H 91° L 64°
Listen
Pause
Error

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Listen
Pause
Error

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Local
Swimming pools, hot tubs are more likely than lakes to make you sick, studies find
Close

Swimming pools, hot tubs are more likely than lakes to make you sick, studies find

Swimming pools, hot tubs are more likely than lakes to make you sick, studies find

Swimming pools, hot tubs are more likely than lakes to make you sick, studies find

Taking a cool, refreshing dip in a lake or swimming pool is one of summer’s enjoyments and sometimes a necessary escape from the stifling heat.

But two recent federal health studies found that some waters is better than others, at least when it comes to avoiding waterborne illnesses.

Of 633 outbreaks nationwide caused by bacteria, viruses or other things floating around, nearly 80 percent of them were traced to water that was treated with chlorine or other chemicals in swimming pools, hot tubs or wading pools. Most illnesses cause intestinal problems and diarrhea.

The studies, which tracked outbreaks from 2000 through 2014, found 493 outbreaks where 27,219 people were sickened and eight died from pathogens in recreational water treated with chemicals. The figures do not include sicknesses linked to private pools or cases where just one person got ill.

By comparison, there were just 140 outbreaks linked to lakes, rivers or swimming holes, with 4,958 people falling ill and two deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


TRENDING STORIES:


“People have a false sense of security when they go to a swimming pool,” said Trisha Robinson, an epidemiologist supervisor at the Minnesota Department of Health. “There is this sense that chlorine kills everything. That is not the case.”

In Minnesota, there were 51 reported recreational-water disease outbreaks over the past 10 years. Only nine were from pathogens in lakes or rivers. Still, compared with foodborne disease outbreaks, which recently have been linked to tainted lettuce, pre-cut melon, raw veggie plates, cereal, eggs and restaurant workers who don’t wash their hands, the risk of getting a waterborne illness is relatively low.

In Minnesota, public pools must be licensed and often are inspected annually. Regulators check on safety equipment, plumbing and chemical levels.

“If they are not meeting the chlorine level, we would do a closure on that until they meet the requirement,” said Ryan Krick, an environment health supervisor at the Minneapolis Department of Health.

Pool operators are also required to check chemical levels daily and keep a log of chemicals added.

But add people to the pools, and that is where the problems begin.

“It really is a communal bathtub,” said Robinson. “You are sharing water and germs in it with everybody else that is in there.”

The chlorine and other chemicals help neutralize some things, but many outbreaks have been caused by Cryptosporidium, a tiny parasite that can survive in chlorinated water up to seven days.

>> Firefighters save the day after spotting kids struggling to fill pool

The source of the problem is human fecal matter. While an accident made by an infant is the nightmare scenario, even the most fastidious adults can be the source if they do not shower before entering the pool.

“We can make a lot of people sick if we don’t take precautions,” said Robinson.

No one who has not showered should swim in a lake either, but the sheer size of most lakes means the bacteria and microscopic parasites disperse, lessening the chances of infection even if someone swallows water accidentally.

Most of the waterborne diseases lead to stomach and intestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, stomach cramps, fever, and vomiting.

Tragically, Minnesota has seen two fatalities in children caused from a waterborne amoeba that enters the nose and attacks the brain. Although rare, it is most risky in shallow, warm lakewater. Parents should teach children to try to keep water out of their noses or mouths, Robinson said.

Also, people should avoid swimming in areas that are contaminated with animal feces. Some local and state health departments monitor beaches for contamination.

“Swimming is a really great activity,” said Robinson. “No matter where (you are) swimming, try not to swallow the water.”

Read More

News

  • Disney is giving fans another look at its upcoming sequel to the megahit 'Frozen' with the latest trailer to 'Frozen 2.' The preview starts with Anna and Elsa as children being told of the history of their homeland by their father.  >> Read more trending news  He says there's a forest north of Arendell where 'something went wrong,' and since it happened, no one can cross the barrier between their home and the magical forest, People magazine reported. Apparently the tale of the forbidden forest has stayed in the mind of Queen Elsa, who is called to the mist between the two worlds, E! News reported.  Anna still not being able to let it go, tells Elsa, 'I believe in you Elsa, more than anyone or anything.'  Watch the trailer below or click here.  Elsa and Anna are once again voiced by Idina Menzel and Kristen Bell. Jonathan Groff and Josh Gad are also reprising their roles as Kristoff and Olaf, E! reported. Joining the saga this time are Evan Rachel Wood and Sterling K. Bell.  'Frozen 2' is expected to be released on Nov. 22.
  • It was supposed to be a typical eight-hour work shift for Satchel Smith when the 21-year-old college student reported to work Wednesday at Homewood Suites in Beaumont, Texas. >> Read more trending news  Tropical Storm Imelda changed things dramatically. Smith, a junior at nearby Lamar University, was stranded at the hotel for 32 straight hours as the sole employee on-site as flooding from the storm prevented access to the building, KPMT reported. He held down the fort for the more than 90 guests staying at the hotel, who hailed him as a hero. “I got to work about 3 p.m. (Sept. 18) and it had been raining the whole day, but it wasn’t flooding yet,' Smith told the television station. 'Then the morning came around, and I was the only one there and everyone was expecting breakfast.'  Smith said his night shift co-worker, who was supposed to relieve him, texted at 7 p.m. Wednesday and said she could not make it to work. Normally, Smith works one shift a week because he is a full-time student and competes for the Lamara track and field team. He worked the equivalent of four shifts beginning Wednesday. Angela Chandler, a hotel guest last week, praised Smith's poise under pressure in a Facebook post. 'Meet Satchel. He is the only employee here at Homewood Suites in Beaumont,' Chandler wrote Thursday. 'The access road is underwater and I-10 is shut down due to flooding. We can’t get in or go out. The hotel a mile from us is underwater. 'He has manned the phones, answered each of our questions, ensured that we have had a hot cup of coffee or tea, and helped serve us a hot breakfast,' Chandler wrote. 'He has handled this situation with grace, kindness, and a beautiful smile on his face.' Chandler's post has generated more than 53,000 views, 13,000 shares and more than 6,300 comments as of Monday morning. Smith remained composed while the stormy weather wreaked havoc with the hotel's computer systems and set off several fire alarms, KPMT reported. He quickly learned to multi-task, becoming a cook, maintenance man and troubleshooter. 'It was pretty intense,' Smith told CNN. He served cereal for breakfast and then a guest volunteered to help him make breakfast in the hotel's kitchen, the television station reported. The next night, guests helped Smith make chicken pasta for dinner, KPMT reported. 'I'd never worked in a kitchen,' Smith told CNN. 'I'm not really a good cook.' Smith finally got some relief when another employee was able to enter the building at 9:30 p.m. Friday, KPMT reported. He took a short nap at the hotel and then returned to work, helping his co-workers tend to the hotel guests. Company officials joined guests with praise. 'And our Friday inspiration comes from the strength and character of an amazing young man named Satchel,' Homewood Suites officials wrote on their official Twitter account. 'A Homewood Suites by Hilton Team Member in Beaumont, and role model to all of us! Way to go, Satchel!' Smith said it was just another day at the office. 'I was always gonna be there for them, I would never plan on leaving,' Smith told KPMT. 'I don’t consider myself a hero, that’s just what I would do. I think anybody would do the same thing.
  • Torrent Pharmaceuticals Limited has expanded its voluntary recall of losartan potassium tablets after finding trace amounts of an “unexpected impurity.” The expanded recall includes an additional three lots of losartan potassium tablets USP and two lots of losartan potassium/hydrochlorothiazide tablets. The impurity is N-Methylnitrosobutyric acid. Torrent is recalling only lots of losartan NMBA above the acceptable daily intake levels released by the FDA. >> Read more trending news  Losartan belongs to a class of medicines used for treating high blood pressure called angiotensin II receptor blockers. Some generic versions of other ARBs, such as valsartan and irbesartan, have also been recalled. Losartan is used to treat hypertension, hypertensive patients with left ventricular hypertrophy and for the treatment of nephropathy in type 2 diabetic patients. Losartan potassium and hydrochlorothiazide tablets, USP are used to treat hypertension and hypertensive patients with left ventricular hypertrophy. Since July 2018, the FDA has announced voluntary recalls of blood pressure and heart medications from Major Pharmaceuticals, Solco Healthcare, Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries, Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Prinston Pharmaceuticals, Macleods Pharmaceuticals Limited, Camber Pharmaceuticals and Torrent. To alleviate shortages caused by these recalls, the FDA in March approved a generic form of the blood pressure medication Diovan, or valsartan. If you were prescribed the medications above, the Food and Drug Administration recommends you continue taking them until an alternative treatment is in place, because, 'The risk of harm to the patient's health may be higher if the treatment is stopped immediately.' A list of specific recalled items is at FDA.gov. Consumers with medical questions regarding this recall or to report an adverse event can contact Torrent Pharmaceuticals Limited at 1-800-912-9561 from 8:00 am - 5:00 pm Eastern Time and Medinfo.Torrent@apcerls.com.
  • An Arizona woman is accused of burglarizing a home while bringing her grade school-aged son with her. >> Read more trending news  Brittany Shante Eason, 30, of Mesa, was charged with second-degree burglary in the Sept. 15 incident, according to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office. According to police, Eason entered a Mesa home through a garage door window while leaving her son outside, KNXV reported. According to police, Eason stole several pieces of jewelry and credit cards and put them in her car, the television station reported. When the owners of the home arrived at their residence, they escorted Eason out of the garage, according to KNXV. The boy was seen by the victims outside the garage window, the television station reported. According to court records, Eason ran up an $861 bill on the credit card. Police said some of the stolen jewelry was found in Eason's car by her father, KNXV reported. Eason was arrested later in the day, the television station reported. She is scheduled to appear in court Oct. 4, according to court records.
  • You may not know his name, but fans of two distinct genres of films may know his characters.  Sid Haig who appeared in horror films like 'House of 1,000 Corpses' and 'The Devil's Rejects' and blaxploitation films like 'Coffy' and 'Foxy Brown' died Saturday, Entertainment Weekly reported. Haig's death was announced on his wife, Susan Oberg's, Instagram account Monday. Oberg wrote on social media earlier this month that Haig had been in an accident, but didn't say what exactly happened at that time, Entertainment Weekly reported. >> Read more trending news  Haig's career stretched back to the early '70s with appearances in George Lucas' 'THX 1138,' 'Diamonds Are Forever' and 'Jackie Brown' where Quentin Tarantino wrote a role of a judge specifically for Haig, The Wrap reported.  But he may be most well known for the Rob Zombie trilogy 'House of 1,000 Corpses,' 'The Devil's Rejects' and '3 From Hell' where he played Captain Spaulding, a clown makeup-wearing leader of the Firefly family, according to The Wrap. Haig had missed the recent premiere of the latest Rob Zombie film '3 from Hell' last week due to his accident, Variety reported. Haig was 80.
  • They take their football seriously in Philadelphia. Even scholarly types can go overboard when their beloved Eagles lose. >> Read more trending news  During the fourth quarter of Philadelphia's 27-24 televised loss to the Detroit Lions, the Fox network handling the broadcast showed an angry Eagles fan shouting as the telecast broke for a commercial. The angry fan was identified as Eric Furda, the University of Pennsylvania's dean of admissions since 2008, according to the The Philadelphia Inquirer. The clip quickly went viral, as it resonated with other angry Eagles fans. Furda admitted he was the culprit on Twitter, but only after he posted Sunday that he was 'not sure what the refs were looking at today.' Furda took a more apologetic tone Monday morning. 'After further review of the play I will take the 15 yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct,' Furda tweeted. 'But I will not lose my passion for Philadelphia and Penn sports!' The Eagles, who have lost two straight games after beating Washington in their season opener, travel to Green Bay to face the Packers at Lambeau Field on Thursday night.