Legionella - it has not gone away

12th June 2015

The following story was found in the press and shows that if not properly managed any water situation can lead to legionella problems which in this case was fatal.

A DIY chain is being sued by the relatives of three men who died after being struck down with Legionnaires' disease following an outbreak from a filthy hot tub.

Delivery driver Richard Griffin, 64, and customers William Hammersley, 79, and Harry Cadman, 71, died after contracting the disease in the summer of 2012. A report by The Health Protection Agency (HPA) said the bug originated from a hot tub on display at the JTF Warehouse in Fenton, Stoke-on-Trent, which had not been filtered or cleaned for weeks.

It caused the water in it to stagnate, leading to the formation of bacteria and the build up of Legionnaires' disease droplets. When the hot tub was then turned on the particles became airborne and spread around the garden centre.

Father-of-two Mr Griffin, from Clayton, Staffordshire, was the first victim of the outbreak and died on August 2, 2012, after spending a week in hospital. He had been delivering meat to the cafe, right next to the display hot tub, at the JTF Warehouse which he visited five days a week.

Grandfather-of-two Mr Hammersley, from Chesterton, Staffordshire, died on August 4 while Mr Cadman, from Stoke-on-Trent, died from the disease days later. They had both been browsing around the garden warehouse and came within close proximity to the hot tub, which was displayed near the paying points, entrance and exit.