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Legionella failings result in substantial fine and updated water management processes

10 December 2018

Improvements to its water management procedures have been announced by Tendring District Council after a leisure centre customer contracted Legionnaire's Disease.

The incident resulted in an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that identified problems with the processes in place to manage the risk of legionella in water systems.

After the investigation, conducted in 2016, the resulting court case heard the council plead guilty to breaching health and safety regulations and a fine of £27,000 was subsequently issued by Colchester Magistrates' Court last week.

The case is another highly relevant example of the importance of ensuring that all systems and processes are maintained to best effect in facilities of all types.

In addition to the fine, the council was also ordered to pay costs of £7,197 and a statutory victim surcharge of £170.

According to the LocalGov website, council chief executive Ian Davidson issued an apology to the person who caught the disease, further stating that its legionella management systems had been updated.

"We deeply regret that standards fell below the high level that we hold ourselves to, and we know which the public expect from us," he said.

Further stating that the council "fully accepted" the court's ruling, Mr Davidson said the council would seek to "mitigate the knock-on effect" of the fine on "tax payers and service users as best we can".

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