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29-Year Old Man Killed by Brain-Eating Amoeba at Waco Surf Resort

A New Jersey man was on vacation at the BSR Cable Park surf resort in Waco, Texas, when health officials suggest that he became infected with Naegleria fowleri, a type of amoeba. An amoeba is a single-cell animal that can be parasitic in some instances. Naegleria fowleri is a parasitic amoeba that occasionally infects a human being. It routinely is called a “brain-eating amoeba.”

An individual with questions about their legal rights following a water park infection or injury can obtain assistance by calling The Doan Law Firm water park injury hotline at (800) 349-0000. The water park injury hotline is staffed around the clock, 365 days a year.

Naegleria fowleri can be found in warm bodies of fresh water, including lakes, hot springs, and water parks like the one at which the New Jersey vacationer is thought to have been infected. This type of amoeba enters a person’s body through the nose. Once inside the body, the amoeba travels to an individual’s brain. Naegleria fowleri is not known to spread from person to person.

When Naegleria fowleri reaches the brain, it causes an infection that is known as primary amebic meningoencephalitis. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describe this infection as being “rare and devastating” and nearly always fatal. Only a handful of individuals have ever survived an infection by this parasitic amoeba, according to the CDC.

The man who became ill and died was at the surf park on September 8th. He was back home in New Jersey on September 14th when he experienced a severe headache while mowing the lawn at his residence.

The headache had not abated by the following day. In fact, as that day progressed, the man could not get out of bed and could no longer speak coherently. Admitted to the hospital, doctors discovered the amoeba in the man’s spinal fluid. A vain effort was made to save his life, but the infected man died not long after being diagnosed.

Investigation of Surf Park

The CDC immediately began an investigation of the Texas surf or water park when the report of the man’s diagnosis was made. Specifically, water samples from throughout the facility are being tested. According to the CDC, no additional infections have yet been reported. The owners of the surf or water park resort voluntarily agreed to shut the entire facility down pending a completion of the investigation by the CDC as well as state and local health agencies in Texas.

Although infection by the parasitic amoeba Naegleria fowleri is rare in Texas and elsewhere around the country, it does occur. In Texas alone, between 2005 and the present time there have been nine cases of this type of infection in the Lone Star State. Across the United States, since the 1960s, there have been roughly four to five cases reported annually, although the yearly range in reporting bounces from zero to eight.

Other Types of Water Park Infections

While Naegleria fowleri infection may be rare, there are other types of illness-causing pathogens found in water parks that can cause harm. Among the most common found in the United States are:

  • Cryptosporidium
  • Giardia
  • Shigella
  • Norovirus
  • E. coli

There are instances in which these pathogens can result in highly serious and even fatal illnesses.

Protecting Your Legal Rights Following a Water Park Infection

Surf and water parks bear a legal responsibility to ensure that appropriate steps are taken to ensure safety. This includes taking reasonable precautions to protect against dangerous pathogens being present in the water.

A person who is infected with a dangerous virus, bacterium, or amoeba at a water park, or loses a family member as a result of such an infection, best protects his or her legal rights by proactively retaining an experienced personal injury attorney, like a member of the legal team at The Doan Law Firm. An initial consultation can be scheduled by calling the firm’s water park injury hotline at (800) 349-0000. The firm is nationwide, with offices located coast-to-coast across the United States. Indeed, The Doan Law Firm is the largest personal injury firm in country. A no-obligation, no-charge initial consultation can be scheduled any time convenient to a prospective client.

The Doan Law has an attorney fee guarantee in a water park injury case. The firm never charges a fee unless a favorable settlement or judgment is obtained for a client.

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