Raleigh vendors take precautions after hot tub displays linked to Legionnaires’ disease

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — This weekend, the Raleigh Home Show is attracting lots of people, including Chen Chiu, who is interested in home improvement projects.

“My parents, they just recently bought a house, and there’s a couple of things we want to do,” Chiu said.

But some vendors are taking extra precautions after a deadly outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease at a western North Carolina fair last week was traced back to hot tub displays.

With about 20 years in the industry, Rod Adams with Spa & Pool Outlet said he’s never heard of the link between hot tubs and the disease.

“No one wants to hear something like that, especially in our industry,” Adams said.

He told CBS 17 he’s had customers ask about it at the Raleigh Home Show.

But he and others are taking extra steps, with more chlorine and testing with their hot tubs because of the outbreak.

“We’ve been actually testing this hot tub about once an hour, every hour,” he said. “We do have a lot of people coming in and out of the booth. We’ve never had an incident at this show, like they had in the mountains. We don’t anticipate having something like that.”

The Raleigh show’s manager, Chiara Renella-Brooks, said they’ve always taken precautionary measures, and they’re required to have hot tub companies test their water a few times a day.

“There is absolutely no fear whatsoever for anyone to come to our home show,” Renella-Brooks said.

She added state health officials have given her guidelines to follow.

“We do have guidance we have created, especially in light of the outbreak at the Mountain State Fair that’s specifically for vendors of hot tubs and other whirlpools,” state epidemiologist Zack Moore said.

Officials with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services have online materials discussing Legionnaires’ disease.

The Associated Press is also reporting a the Dixie Classic Fair is banning the use of hand-held mist fans, following the outbreak.

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