Red Cross is investigating how the man became infected. (Susana Vera/Reuters)

The international Red Cross says a local employee has died of Ebola in Sierra Leone, becoming the first Red Cross worker or volunteer to succumb to the disease there.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said the male nurse, whom it didn't identify, worked at an Ebola treatment center in Kenema. He died Tuesday and was confirmed to have been suffering from the disease.

It said Thursday it is investigating how the man became infected and whether it happened at home or at work. The agency said 29 people who had contact with him are being monitored for symptoms.

Sierra Leone has seen 3,062 deaths attributed to Ebola in the yearlong outbreak, which has killed 8,414 in West Africa's three worst-affected countries.

There are positive signs. The hardest hit countries of Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia recorded their lowest weekly number of new cases in months, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

The World Health Organization noted a total of 843 health-care workers are known to have been infected with Ebola up to the end of Jan. 11. Of these, 500 have died.

With files from Reuters and CBC News