Letting agents and landlords are being warned to keep their properties safe, as a new reminder highlights the dangers of Legionnaire’s disease.
The warning, sounded from the Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors, comes after a report from Public Health England on the death of three men as a result of Legionnaires.
All three men contracted the fatal disease from a poorly maintained hot tub, which was on display at a garden centre. The tub was found to have not been filtered or even cleaned for a number of weeks.
As a result, the amount of stagnant water enabled bacteria to grow freely. When the hot tub was switched on for display purposes, Legionnaires’ particles were airborne and subsequently spread around the centre.
Alongside the tragic deaths of the three men, another twenty-one people caught the bug as a result of the same outbreak.
What is Legionnaires’ Disease?
Legionnaires Disease is an infection that affects the lungs and is caused by bacteria legionella. This bacteria is commonly located in freshwater areas but can also be found in artificial supplies.
The tragic garden centre case shows that water supplies that are not filtered, cleaned or properly maintained carry serious risks, even if there is no contact with the liquid.
Landlords and agents are warned that all hot and cold water systems within a property that is used for commercial purposes or has public access must be assessed for legionella. This includes all residential properties that are let, alongside hotels and hospitals.
Figures from February released by Public Health England indicate that thirty-one cases of Legionnaires Disease were reported in England and Wales.