NJ State Corrections officials stopped short with conclusively linking the death of an inmate who died at a prison in NJ to water discovered with the potentially deadly Legionnaires disease.
According to a statement released to RLS Media by NJ Corrections officials, Legionella bacterium naturally found in freshwater has been found in the water sample of building six at Northern State Prison in Newark.
Officials said the NJ Department of Corrections has been working with the Department of Health to address this issue.
According to NJ Corrections officials, 19 inmates housed in the affected unit were immediately moved out of an abundance of caution.
“For their safety, they will be monitored for 14 days for lower respiratory symptoms”, Spokeswoman Liz Velez told RLS Media.
“Although the bacterium is isolated to one building, the Department is providing access to potable water for inmates and staff consumption and portable hand washing stations while remediation of the water lines is underway,” Velez said. Spokeswoman Velez confirmed that there are no active cases of Legionnaire at this time.
The official cause of death for the inmate was under investigation by the State Regional Medical Examiners Officer.