The Department of National Defence (DND) has confirmed that a case of Legionnaires’ disease was present at the Canadian Forces Base (CFB) in Kingston, Ontario late last year, leading to the building being slated for demolition. The individual who contracted the disease was a civilian employee of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), whose identity has not been released for privacy reasons.
Legionnaires’ disease is a severe form of pneumonia that causes lung inflammation and occasional infections in other parts of the body, stemming from a bacterium known as legionella. It can lead to life-threatening complications such as respiratory failure, septic shock, and acute kidney failure.
According to a source at the Kingston base, who spoke to The Epoch Times on the condition of anonymity, the patient’s condition reportedly deteriorated to the point where limbs had to be amputated. The source also said the patient reportedly contracted the disease from legionella that developed in a water puddle inside one of the base’s buildings due to an unchecked water leak.
DND said that sanitation units were contacted to examine the contaminated building after the military base learned of the case. Tests conducted on Jan. 9 found 23 samples of legionella, leading to the decision to demolish the building. DND added that there is no threat to the surrounding community or the Defence Team member’s co-workers.
The Epoch Times previously reported on living conditions issues at both the Canadian Forces School of Communications and Electronics (CFSCE) and the Royal Military College of Canada (RMC), which are also both located in Kingston. CAF members stationed at CFSCE listed a number of building issues in a document obtained by The Epoch Times in November 2022, which included black mould, mice infestations, and numerous water leaks. A leaked briefing note from October 2022 authored by a captain and reviewed by a lieutenant-colonel also addressed poor living conditions at the school.
CFB Kingston Deputy Commander Lieutenant-Colonel Christopher Durant said in an email that the school has undertaken a number of “multi-million-dollar projects” to address the issues, which include upgrades for the school’s heating, air-conditioning, and ventilation systems, among others.