Toilets and shower facilities at Linford Christie Stadium were closed at the end of last year after Legionella bacteria was discovered in the water.
An “on-going issue of contamination in of the water system” meant the changing rooms, showers and toilets were shut to members of the public in mid-September, Hammersmith and Fulham Council documents reveal.
The changing rooms have since reopened but toilets and showers remain closed with a cabin set up outside for use.
The details were revealed in the agenda of December’s Wormwood Scrubs Charitable Trust Committee meeting.
Facilities affected are used by teams playing on Wormwood Scrubs and members of the public using the stadium, which also hosts football and rugby.
In the agenda for the meeting held on December 6, it is revealed: “Over the last quarter there have been ongoing issues with contamination of the water system at Linford Christie Stadium.
“Routine water testing identified high levels of Legionella bacteria in the pipework in mid-September and the changing facilities and toilets were immediately closed.
“The water temperature was raised and system chlorinated. Further samples taken showed the system still had traces of Legionella bacteria so the system chlorination and flush was repeated in mid-October with the facility being reopened in late October after filters were fitted to the water outlets.”
The area affected is not used or operated by athletics club Thames Valley Harriers, which is based at the stadium. It has separate facilities in a clubhouse.
According to Hammersmith and Fulham Council football, teams playing football, Gaelic football and youth baseball on Wormwood Scrubs use the change and wash facilities at the stadium, on Artillery Way, off Du Cane Road.
It was revealed in February that Championship side QPR are exploring the possibility of building a new ground on the site of the stadium , next to Wormwood Scrubs in White City in a potential partnership with Thames Valley Harriers.
Hammersmith and Fulham Council said there has been no instances of the bacteria returning in the new block or the reopened changing rooms.
What is Legionnaires’ disease?
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Legionellosis is a collective term for diseases caused by Legionella bacteria including the most serious Legionnaires’ disease, as well as the similar but less serious conditions of Pontiac fever and Lochgoilhead fever.
Legionnaires’ disease is a potentially fatal form of pneumonia and everyone is susceptible to infection.
Where does it come from?
Outbreaks of the illness occur from exposure to Legionella growing in purpose-built systems where water is maintained at a temperature high enough to encourage growth, e.g. cooling towers, evaporative condensers, hot and cold water systems and spa pools used in all sorts of premises (work and domestic).
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease are similar to the symptoms of the flu:
- high temperature, feverishness and chills
- muscle pains
- headache; and leading on to
- pneumonia, very occasionally
- diarrhoea and signs of mental confusion
Is it contagious?
It is not known to spread from person to person.
How is it treated?
Source: Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
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