This past summer New York City experienced the worst Legionnaires’ disease outbreak in its recorded history. In what is now being referred to as the NYC Legionella Outbreak of 2015, more than 130 people were sickened and 16 people tragically died. In an effort to keep the public safe, both the City and State of New York passed emergency legislation designed to regulate the operation and maintenance of cooling towers. Today, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) seeks to make those emergency provisions stronger and lasting; and will hold a public hearing to discuss and pass their newly proposed rules. The hearing will take place from 10AM to 12PM on January 4, 2016 at DOHMH headquarters in Long Island City. Once the hearing is over, the DOHMH will modify the rules based on the public’s feedback, if necessary, and then draft a final version. A copy is then published in the City Record and submitted to the City Council where it will be voted on to become law. This legislation will have an effect on the operation procedures of any building that operates a cooling, as well as the water treatment companies and environmental consulting firms that service them.
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