The bacteria that cause the potentially fatal Legionnaires’ disease exist throughout nature and can be found in lakes and rivers. They are also present in cooling towers, plumbing systems and decorative fountains. One could also contract Legionnaires’ disease from a swimming pool. There are various reasons why this is possible. The legionella bacteria are particularly virulent when found in warmer water; this is because water at this temperature can harbour minute organisms on which the bacteria will thrive.
When swimming pools are not regularly disinfected or cleaned, this can be sufficient for someone entering the pool to become contaminated. Swimmers in water that is contaminated can also pick up the infection when they breathe in mist or steam. Above average water temperatures make it particularly difficult to maintain the appropriate disinfectant levels required to kill off bacteria such as legionella. It is important that the local authorities, or any owners in charge of the swimming pool, take appropriate steps to kill off any infection, such as using chlorine to disinfect the water.
How can contamination be stopped?
It may be difficult to pick up Legionnaires’ disease from a swimming pool, but it is far from impossible. Whoever has the responsibility of looking after the facility must take appropriate steps to ensure the quality of the water. There should be regular checks of factors such as the chlorine injection system, to ensure that the pool is being regularly disinfected. The plumbing can also harbour legionella bacteria, so it is important that pipes that are taking water into the pool are kept running at a safe temperature. When the pool is not in use, the water should not stay heated, as low temperatures will kill off the bacteria that can cause infections to spread.
Phone now to set your mind at rest
Swimming should be a pleasurable pastime, so contracting something as unpleasant as Legionnaires’ disease can be very upsetting. Let us put a smile back on your face by looking into your circumstances to determine whether or not you might qualify for redress. If you phone 0800 689 0500, you will be put through to an advisor at Accident Advice Helpline who can refer your details to our team of professional claims lawyers. In the first instance, why not go to our website and try the 30-second claim calculator?
Date Published: May 11, 2015
Author: David Brown