Truck repair shop in Texas shuts down for ‘security concerns’
Two truck repair shop owners in Texas have shut down their businesses for “security concerns,” after reports of an outbreak of what some have described as a virulent strain of botulism that has been blamed for at least one death in the state.
The Texas Department of State Health Services announced on Tuesday that it was closing five businesses that operate in the Houston area because of the outbreak, including one located at the trucking company’s headquarters in McAllen, Texas, where it has been for more than two years.
The company has not responded to questions about the outbreak or its owners.
In a statement, the truck repair business said it had been operating under the supervision of an outside party since November 2013.
The company said it was “aware of the incident and taking steps to mitigate the situation.”
State health officials have said they are concerned about the number of cases, which have been rising.
According to the CDC, about 20 million Americans suffer from botulisms.
The botulosis epidemic is particularly dangerous in Texas because the state’s medical community has been particularly slow to react to the outbreak.
The state’s botulotic outbreak is among the most severe in the nation, according to a 2015 CDC report.
According to a survey released by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, 1,829 Texans contracted botulitis in the past year, with the majority of cases occurring in Texas.
In a separate report published Monday, the Texas Tribune found that between 2013 and 2016, at least two Texas residents died of botulinum toxin-producing botulistic disease, and two people contracted botulinus toxin-related diseases.
Texas is home to about 50,000 people with botulitic infections, according the state health department.
Texas has also seen a surge in the number and severity of cases linked to the spread of botula.
The outbreak has been traced to a strain of the toxin-generating bacterium that is not present in the U.S. and is more common in Asia.
The strain has been linked to several cases of death in Houston, including the death of an 11-year-old boy who had been in the hospital since February.
Officials with the Texas Department for Health Services did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Since mid-November, more than 40 people have died of the botulopathy.
The outbreak has led to the closure of two other truck repair companies in the Austin area.