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Legionella cases dropped for Edinburgh companies

02 July 2018

Charges against three Edinburgh-based companies have been dropped concerning exposure to Legionnaires' Disease.

Decisions concerning two more businesses continue to be awaited, with a further hearing set for 30 July.

Charges were brought against the companies under the Health and Safety at Work, etc, Act 1974, which saw them accused of failing to protect their employees from exposure to legionella bacteria.

The offences were alleged to have taken place at The North British Distillery Company premises in the Gorgie area of Edinburgh between January 2009 and December 2012, according to The Scotsman.

These were brought against The North British Distillery Company, Pera Services and Chemtech Consultancy, all of which pleaded not guilty at Edinburgh Sheriff Court, following which the charges were withdrawn.

Macfarlan Smith and Ashland Industries UK also previously submitted not guilty pleas and these have been maintained.

The HSE has conducted a special initiative to improve the maintenance of cooling towers in recent years, as were identified as the cause for a number of legionella-based outbreaks.

Edinburgh experienced a major outbreak of the disease in 2012, resulting in the deaths of four people and 92 infections.

No prosecutions were brought over the outbreak and the source proved impossible to trace, according to reports.

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