Preventing Legionnaires

Legionnaires disease is a kind of pneumonia, which is named after an outbreak of sever pneumonia that affected a meeting of the American Legion in 1976. It is caused by water borne bacteria that can be transferred to people by breathing in droplets of water contaminated with the bacteria.

The symptoms of this illness are very similar to those of the flu and include a high temperature, cough, muscle pains and headaches and these are treated with antibiotics. However, most people who are exposed to these bacteria do not become ill and the disease is rare.

Although cases of legionnaires disease are normally associated with large industrial water systems, it is possible for the bacteria to form in domestic water systems in certain conditions. We would therefore recommend that you follow the advice given below to make sure that your water system remains safe:

  • Keep your cold water storage tank covered.
  • Make sure that any lengths of pipe, showers or taps that are not used regularly are flushed through frequently to remove any stagnant water.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect any taps and shower heads in your home.
  • Make sure that taps and showers are flushed through following any periods when they have not been used to move any stagnant water, for example when you get home from holiday.
  • Report any repairs that are needed to pipework, taps or showers in your home promptly and contact us if you have any concerns about the equipment installed in your home.
  • Follow the advice that we give you if you apply for permission to install your own shower.

If you have any concerns about the quality of your drinking water, please contact Veolia Water Through the useful link above.

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