Health

Legionella outbreak: What is legionella? Traces detected on trains prompting rail strike

Legionella micro organism might be probably deadly and due to this fact, after low ranges of the micro organism had been discovered on Thameslink trains, the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) has expressed concern. Thousands contract the virus every year and if left untreated the an infection might be deadly.

Thameslink confirmed hint quantities of legionella had been present in seven bogs on 4 trains.

The bogs have been drained and bleached by the RMT union who stated this transfer was “half-hearted and inadequate”.

The union has threatened strike motion over the risk the micro organism poses to staff.

The prepare operator stated there was “no recorded case of anyone, ever, contracting legionella from a train”.

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Thameslink has been eager to emphasize low ranges of the micro organism had been discovered on its trains.

Rob Mullen, prepare companies director at Thameslink, stated: “A very low level of legionella was found to be present during testing in a small number of our Thameslink Class 700 train toilets.

“While it is extremely unlikely this would cause any harm to passengers or colleagues, the toilets affected were immediately locked out of use.

“The trains were taken out of service and these toilets have now been drained, bleached and had their tanks completely refilled.”

In an announcement Thameslink stated: “Legionella can potentially be spread through atomised water droplets in the air in enclosed spaces, but water in our toilets is gravity-fed, which makes this extremely unlikely and further lowers the already very low risk.

“However, as a precaution, we immediately closed the affected toilets and took these trains out of service.

“The toilets affected have been completely drained, bleached and re-filled to rectify this situation.”

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Legionnaires’ illness is a extreme and infrequently deadly type of pneumonia.

There are between 4,000 to six,000 circumstances of Legionnaires’ illness recorded every year within the UK.

But there have been solely 503 confirmed circumstances of the an infection in 2019.

You can contract the illness in case you breathe in tiny water droplets containing the micro organism.

Usually, it is caught in locations like motels, hospitals or workplaces, the place the micro organism has entered the water provide.

Typically, if in case you have come into contact with the micro organism and develop Legionnaires’ illness, signs could embrace a cough, problem respiration, chest ache, a excessive temperature, and flu-like signs.

Some sufferers can also expertise muscle ache.

The illness is treatable if caught early and is managed utilizing intravenous antibiotics, having oxygen via a face masks or tubes in your nostril, or utilizing a machine that will help you breathe.

When you begin to get higher you may be capable to take antibiotic tablets at residence.

Antibiotic therapy normally lasts for one to a few weeks.

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