A Texas child has died after being infected with a rare brain-eating amoeba that was found at a waterpark that the boy had visited, according to ABC News.
Tarrant County Public Health officials were notified that a child had been hospitalized with primary amebic meningoencephalitis, a rare infection that is often fatal for those who contract it. The infection was caused by the Naegleria Fowleri amoeba, ABC News reported.
The 11-year-old boy, who city officials are not identifying, died on Sept. 11, according to ABC News. (RELATED: Study Suggests ‘Brain-Eating’ Amoeba May Be Moving North Due To Climate Change)
Officials launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the boy’s death and all public waterparks were closed. City officials announced that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had determined that the Naegleria Fowleri amoeba was present in the water samples from the Don Misenhimer Park splash pad.
Records from two of the four splash pads at Don Misenhimer Park and the Beacon Recreational Center show that employees failed to report or conduct the required daily water quality testing, local news affiliate KTLA 5 reported.
An investigation found that employees had skipped water readings at the park on two of the three days the boy visited. https://t.co/PARmDYEqFZ
— ABC13 Houston (@abc13houston) September 28, 2021
“To know that there is a role that the city may have played in that is highly disturbing,” said Lemuel Randolph, deputy city manager for the city of Arlington.
The CDC says that there have only been 34 reported cases of Naegleria Fowleri in the U.S. from 2010 to 2019.
The CDC has cleared the city’s water supply as safe, as backflow preventers separated the splash pad’s water from public water.