Cryptosporidium Closes Phoenix Pools

July 16, 2008
Facilities closed indefinitely; parasite may have sickened 35

Public pools in Phoenix are closed indefinitely as staffers work to clean facilities in response to a parasite that may have sickened 35 people, according to the Arizona Republic.

The cryptosporidium parasite was found in stool samples submitted by two people who swam earlier this month at Starlight Pool at 78th Avenue and Osborn Road.

Thirty-five people who swam at Starlight Pool, including 14 pool staff, had reported symptoms as of July 15, Phoenix officials said.

Workers "hyperchlorinated" the city's 29 pools July 15, scrubbing the surfaces of handrails, diving boards and other areas. City officials say they are doubling the amount of chlorine to ensure the pools are clean, exceeding federal, state and county expectations.

As early as July 4, pool staffers and visitors reported symptoms of the parasite.

The parasite is protected by an outer shell that allows it to survive outside the body for long periods of time and makes it very resistant to chlorine disinfection, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Protection.

Source: The Arizona Republic