2 cases of Legionnaires' disease linked to hot tub at Clermont retirement community

CLERMONT, Fla. — The Florida Health Department tracked two cases of Legionnaires' disease to a hot tub at a Clermont retirement community.

Health investigators are trying to determine if the disease is to blame for the death of a third person.

Two people at Summit Greens in Clermont recently tested positive the disease.

The cases come on the heels of an unrelated investigation in Orange County where four people contracted the disease at two L.A. Fitness gyms.

Authorities said the community hot tub at Summit Greens was the source of the bacteria found in the new cases.

The hot tub has since been disinfected, but health department officials said people may not be out of the woods yet.

Watch: 9 Facts about Legionnaires' disease

They will continue to monitor people here over the next couple of weeks.

According to the health department, the first case of Legionnaires' disease was diagnosed May 25.

The next day, another person was diagnosed with the Legionella bacteria.

Both were residents of the Summit Greens community.

After an investigation, authorities narrowed the search down to the hot tub at the clubhouse.

The hot tub was closed down June 6.

"So we are currently working on a two-to 14-day incubation period. We are urging residents that pretty much from the last day they used the hot tub, they can develop symptoms anywhere from two to 14 days after exposure," said Giselle Barreto, a government operations consultant with the Florida Department of Health in Lake County.

Legionella is a common waterborne micro-organism found in closed water systems.

When it aerolizes in a shower head or a hot tub jet, it’s inhaled.

Symptoms include a fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing and pneumonia.

A third individual who showed signs of Legionnaires' disease later died, but his tests for the disease were negative.

“We have pursued further testing by having a culture sent to the CDC to ensure that it wasn't one of those other possible types,” said Barreto.

The two patients have been treated and released from the hospital.

Jeff Levkulich

Jeff Levkulich, WFTV.com

Jeff Levkulich joined the Eyewitness News team as a reporter in June 2015.