Legal fight over disease outbreak

09 Jul 2014

Solicitors working for people affected by the 2012 Legionnaires disease outbreak in Edinburgh are preparing to take legal action to discover what caused it.

Two years ago last month four people lost their lives and another 45 had to be treated in hospital due to the outbreak.

A review written by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) last year was passed to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) in 2013 but the victims have not yet been told what the HSE found.

It was suggested that the Legionella bacteria could have come from cooling towers in the city. The bacteria are known to infect people as it can be in water droplets in the air. It is sometimes found in ponds and rivers.

People with Legionnaires disease, a type of pneumonia, have trouble breathing and joint pains.

Law firm Irwin Mitchell Scotland is representing some of the victims of the 2012 outbreak. They say it is unacceptable that the Scottish Government and the HSE are keeping them in the dark about what happened.

Facilities managers and other professionals will discuss the disease and water safety rules at this year's Combatting Legionella and Water Treatment conference at the Holte Suite, Villa Park, Birmingham, on September 24 and 25.

Copyright Press Association 2014

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