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COUNCIL SHUTS LEISURE CENTRES IN LEGIONELLA THREAT

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Routine maintenance on the water systems at Woodhouse Close and Spectrum leisure complexes in Wear Valley returned ...
Routine maintenance on the water systems at Woodhouse Close and Spectrum leisure complexes in Wear Valley returned water samples that displayed evidence of Legionella bacteria in one isolated part of their hot water systems. As a result, the leisure complexes were temporarily closed to the public on Wednesday 19 May to allow the systems to be flushed and sanitised. Remedial action has been taken in line with government and Health and Safety Executive guidelines. As a result the domestic hot water systems have now been fully drained down and sanitised.

The council are currently awaiting written confirmation from an independent water hygiene contractor that the systems are sealed and that the buildings will be safe to open to the public. Once written confirmation is received it is anticipated that the Woodhouse Close Leisure Complex will be re-opened to the public from 4pm on Friday 21 May, but only after independent confirmation of the safety of the public has been received by the council. As the bacteria was detected in the hot water system of the complex, this will have to remain isolated for at least two weeks to await the results of further testing to ensure that the system is clear. This means that the complex will be without hot water during this period.

The Spectrum Leisure Complex in Willington will need to have plumbing work carried out on the water systems to isolate the affected elements and it is anticipated that the complex will re-open by end of next week.

The Health Protection Agency has issued a letter of guidance to all general practitioners in Wear Valley which says: 'The local authority has taken prompt and appropriate action according to national guidelines to ensure safety of the domestic water supply and there is not considered to have been any risk to public health. There is no evidence at this time of associated illness as a result of these findings and routine surveillance by this unit will continue.'

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