The death of a child by Ameva eating a brain linked to Arlington’s splash pad, says the city


According to the city, a child died on September 11 in a brain-eating Ameva that may have been exposed to a splash pad in Arlington Park.

Arlington authorities and the Tarrant County Public Health Department reported on September 5 at Cook Children’s Medical Center that a child was hospitalized for primary amebic meningoencephalitis (a rare and often fatal infection). City officials closed all splash pads until the end of the year. The city’s drinking water supply was unaffected.

A county study found that the child was most likely exposed to water either at home or at the Don Misenhimer Park splash pad on the 201 E. Lonesome Dove Trail. Water samples collected between September 10 and September 14 and sent to the Disease Control and Prevention Center tested positive for Ameva on Friday.

Records from the Splash Pads at Don Missen Himmer Park and Beacon Recreation Center show that park and recreation workers did not consistently record or perform water quality tests, including checking for chlorine.

The city is reviewing splashpad equipment, equipment, maintenance, water quality inspection policies, and safety training and protocols for park staff. According to the city, public splash pads passed inspection before the start of the summer season, but were not properly checked or maintained.

Workers did not record water chlorination measurements on the Don Missen Himer splash pad on two of the three dates the child visited in late August and early September. Workers added chlorine to the water system the day after the child’s visit, when records showed that chlorination levels were below local and state minimum requirements.

Employees did not consistently document how water was treated or tracked pool measurements when water was tested below state minimum standards with Beacon and Don Missen Himer. ..

“We have identified gaps in our daily inspection program,” Deputy Mayor Remuel Randolph said in a statement. ‚ÄúThese gaps failed to meet the splashpad maintenance standards. All until the system was verified to be working properly and a maintenance protocol that complies with city, county, and state standards was identified. The splash pad stays closed. “

The infection, sometimes abbreviated as PAM, is caused by ameba Naegleria fowleri. According to the CDC, the disease is a brain infection that leads to the destruction of brain tissue and infects humans when water containing candy enters through the human nose. The risk of infection is low, with only 34 cases of illness reported in the United States between 2010 and 2019. Most infections in the United States have been tracked from warm freshwater lakes and rivers, hot springs, emissions from industrial plants, and in some cases. In some cases, poorly chlorinated swimming pool water or contaminated tap water.

Symptoms of headache, fever, nausea, or vomiting begin 1-9 days after infection. Subsequent symptoms include confusion, lack of attention to people and surroundings, attacks, illusions, imbalance, stiff neck, and confusion. The disease progresses rapidly and is usually fatal within 12 days of the onset of symptoms.

According to the CDC, only four of the 148 known US individuals infected between 1962 and 2019 survived the disease, and it is not clear if treatment is effective.