In the marine, industrial and hospitality sectors, there are quite a few cases where personnel become infected by the legionella bacteria. Legionella is present in cooling towers, water pipes, and boilers and can therefore be transferred to personnel. You can read about the consequences of this below.
Once Legionella has established itself in a water system, it can be spread in droplets that can be inhaled by humans. This is a common occurrence in cooling towers in industry, or in air conditioners and hot tubs. Similarly, personnel can become ill in the hospitality industry or in the Navy. In addition to inhaling the bacteria, there is another possibility of getting sick from Legionella. It can also be contagious when it gets into people’s lungs through drinking water. This cause is less common than the previous one.
These are some symptoms that may indicate Legionella infection. Coughing, difficulty breathing, chest pain, a high temperature, and flu-like symptoms, resulting in pneumonia.
The loss of staff due to Legionella infection carries a lot of financial risks. For example, in 2018 a fine of a whopping £27000 was given to a UK district council after a man nearly died following a Legionella outbreak. This fine would have been even higher had it been a commercial company.
Besides the huge fines involved, it can also be very damaging to your company’s image. Many hotels have already had to close their doors as they were no longer receiving bookings from customers.
Finally, the loss of personnel also means less manpower on the work floor, which can result in less profit and less efficiency.