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MANSLAUGHTER THREAT HANGS OVER MANAGERS

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Public sector risk management forum Alarm has warned that increasing numbers of councils could face corporate mansl...
Public sector risk management forum Alarm has warned that increasing numbers of councils could face corporate manslaughter charges.

This followed Cumbria police's decision to charge Barrow-in-Furness BC and its design services manager Gillian Beckingham with manslaughter after seven people died in an outbreak of legionnaire's disease at a council arts centre (LGC, 13 February).

Alarm chairman Bob Cope said: 'This needs to be a wake-up call to councils. If one council can be prosecuted, it is more than likely that others will find themselves in the same position.'

Severn Trent water is to offer advice to councils in its area on prevention of the disease. Commercial services manager Rob Huxham said some councils lack the expertise to meet their responsibilities to prevent the disease under health and safety and water regulations.

Legionnaire's' disease is spread by droplets of water, typically from air conditioning systems or sprinklers.
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