Officials: Passengers at LAX Airport Potentially Exposed to Measles

Passengers arrive at Los Angeles International Airport
AFP/FREDERIC J. BROWN
KATHERINE RODRIGUEZ

Passengers at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) may have been exposed to measles, health officials announced Tuesday.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said in a statement Tuesday that it confirmed one case of the infectious disease in a person who traveled through the airport’s Tom Bradley International Terminal at 9 a.m. on February 21, 2019, and then had a layover at Delta Airlines Terminal 3 before boarding Delta flight DL 5705.

“Individuals who were at Terminal B and Delta Terminal 3 from 9:00 a.m. through 9:00 p.m. on Thursday [Feb. 21] may be at risk of developing measles due to exposure to this traveler,” the department announced. “Passengers assigned to select seats on Delta flight DL 5705 will be notified separately if they may have been exposed to this individual during the flight.”

The department added that it found out about the measles case on March 7, but stressed that passengers currently traveling through LAX are not at risk for being exposed to measles and those who consumed food at the airport on February 21 are also not at risk for catching the disease.

Health officials say travelers who think they may have been exposed to the infectious disease should contact a health care provider before going into a clinic or doctor’s office.

Symptoms of measles typically include a rash, fever, dry cough, a runny nose, and inflamed eyes, according to a Mayo Clinic fact sheet on the disease. The disease also has an incubation period between 10 and 14 days.

If affected travelers have not experienced symptoms of measles by March 14, they are no longer at risk of catching measles from being in the airport on February 21.

Since January 1, 2019, 228 cases of measles have been reported in 12 states, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Six of the 12 states reported an outbreak that began after a traveler contracted the virus from a foreign country and brought it back to the U.S.

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