One tourist has died and six others have been treated following an outbreak of Legionnaire’s disease at a hotel in Salou (Tarragona province).The patients are all said to be aged between 50 and 82, and come from various parts of Spain and other European Union countries.

Regional health authorities say one patient has been discharged from hospital and another four have been admitted as in-patients in their home regions or countries, although they do not know about the sixth survivor.

The affected tourists are five men and two women, of whom one of the women has since died.

The visitors were all staying at the Hotel Jaime I in the Catalunya seaside town in September, but the case has only just come to light due to its having been reported, in accordance with standard procedure, to the relevant authorities in the region and in Europe.

The hotel has been closed since October 2, when the diagnoses were reported.

More cases may arise in the next few days, since the incubation period for Legionnaire’s is two weeks.

Legionnaire’s is a bacterial infection of the lungs, and the virus is usually traced to air-conditioning and refrigeration systems.

Health authorities are carrying out a full investigation in the hotel to work out where the bacteria source is coming from.