Stats on WRF, water utilities, and just plain water
Number of waterborne disease outbreaks associated with drinking water (n = 818),*
by year and etiology—Waterborne Disease and Outbreak Surveillance System, United
States, 1971–2008, data from CDC
The following graph shows how waterborne disease outbreaks in the United States have declined since the late 1970s and early 1980s.
However, it also shows the increased threat of Legionella spp. in water, which is addressed in the feature article, Emerging Pathogens of
Concern, in this issue of Advances in Water Research.
* Some outbreaks from prior reporting periods were added, reclassified, or excluded during an extensive review (Craun GF, Brunkard JM, Yoder JS, et al. Causes of outbreaks associated with drinking water in the United States from
1971 to 2006. Clin Microbiol Rev 2010;23:507–28); therefore, data are not comparable to figures in previous reports.
† Legionnaires’ disease (LD) was reported to the Waterborne Disease and Outbreak Surveillance System ( WBDOSS) beginning in 2001. A review of publications and CDC-led investigations during 1971–2000 resulted in the addition
of 17 historic LD drinking water outbreaks to WBDOSS.
§ Includes all bacteria except Legionella .