Some of the claims that the West Midlands ‘no win, no fee’ lawyers at Accident Advice Helpline handle relate to very serious diseases. These do not involve an accident but may feature an outbreak of a serious disease that could have been prevented if the necessary precautions had been installed. The West Midlands ‘no win, no fee’ lawyers help the ill person to start a claim for compensation. In the case of outbreaks of serious diseases like Legionnaires’ disease – the person may have been very ill and the compensation may be significant. The West Midlands ‘no win, no fee’ lawyers can help you to claim for the illness itself and for the money that you have lost because you have been ill – this is for things like loss of wages.
West Midlands ‘no win, no fee’ lawyers and outbreaks of disease
The West Midlands ‘no win, no fee’ lawyers may become involved if steps have not been taken to prevent an outbreak of disease. In the case of Legionnaires’ disease, this may be because a competent person (someone who understands the water system and any equipment associated with it) may not have assessed the risks of the hot and cold water system at the care home. Perhaps the advice of a competent person was not sought and perhaps they were not asked about which measures should be put in place to control the risk of exposure to legionella bacteria. Many competent specialists produce an accurate illustration of the layout of the water system – called a schematic diagram – to help them do this.
Most care home operators will control the risk from legionella is by controlling the temperature of the water supply in the care home. The principle is quite simple – if water services are operated at temperatures that prevent legionella growth then legionella will not grow and will not make anyone ill! This is usually achieved by making sure that hot water storage cylinders keep the water at 60 °C or higher. They also make sure that hot water is distributed at 50 °C or higher. However, one risk should not be removed by introducing another one! Hot water is also a risk to health and safety – it can cause scalding and this is a real concern in care homes. For this reason, thermostatic mixing valves may be required to make sure that the water is delivered at a safe temperature.
At the other end of the scale, cold water would be maintained, where possible, below 20 °C. The bacteria would not grow to large numbers at this temperature. A competent person should routinely check the system to make sure that it is operating safely and is not presenting a risk to the residents, staff or visitors at the care home.
Call free on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile phone for free, no obligation advice about making a claim for compensation.
Date Published: 6th September 2014
Author: Sharon Parry