29/Aug/2014 - Last News Update: 19:59

Edinburgh Legionnaires' outbreak: Five people launch legal action

Category: Scotland

Published: 16th Jun 2012 15:00:51

Five people are now taking legal action over the outbreak of Legionnaires' disease in Edinburgh that has left two people dead.

There have been 42 confirmed cases and 47 suspected cases, centred around the south west area of the city.

Health chiefs believe the outbreak has peaked, with the number of cases now static.

The source has yet to be confirmed, although the investigation has focussed on industrial cooling towers.

Last week, Edinburgh man Terry Holleran, 55, instructed specialist illness lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help him find out how the outbreak occurred and what can be done to prevent it from recurring.

Mr Holleran, from Saughton Mains, became ill on 5 June and was treated in hospital before being sent home.

He said: "Too many people have been affected by this and it is time that we all got some answers."

Irwin Mitchell are now understood to be acting on behalf of four others who have fallen ill, and the firm said it was receiving ongoing inquiries about the outbreak.

The first man to die was Robert Air, 56, from the Seafield area of the city, and the death of a second man was reported on Friday.

The Health and Safety Executive has issued improvement notices at three sites, including the North British Distillery in Gorgie and pharmaceuticals firm Macfarlan Smith.

The National Museum of Scotland, in Chambers Street, has also been contacted by investigators, but its improvement notice relates solely to the training of staff and not to the operation of cooling towers.

On Saturday, the Scottish government confirmed that one previously suspected case of the disease had been confirmed, but the overall number of suspected and unconfirmed cases was unchanged.

Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said: "I would like to take this opportunity to again express my sincere sympathy to the friends and family of the patient who passed away yesterday. My thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.

"This is an extremely sad development. However, it is reassuring that the number of cases involved in the outbreak remains static and this is further evidence that the outbreak has reached its peak."

BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Edinburgh Legionnaires' outbreak: Five people launch legal action [Online] (Updated 16th Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1435057/Edinburgh-Legionnaires-outbreak-Five-people-launch-legal-action [Accessed 29th Aug 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • Chelsea's Fernando Torres joins AC Milan on two-year loan

    Chelsea striker Fernando Torres is to join AC Milan on a two-year loan deal.
  • Ebola: Experimental drug ZMapp is '100% effective' in animal trials

    The only clinical trial data on the experimental Ebola drug ZMapp shows it is 100% effective in monkey studies, even in later stages of the infection.
  • Strictly Come Dancing: Full celebrity line-up confirmed

    The complete line-up for this year's Strictly Come Dancing series has been revealed ahead of the BBC One talent show's launch night on 6 September.
  • Swimmer Ross Murdoch beaten by schoolboy 'superfan' Brian Fitzpatrick

    A five-year-old boy who wrote a fan letter to Commonwealth swimming champion Ross Murdoch got to race his hero in the pool - and beat him.
  • Eurozone anxiety overshadows EU summit

    In the midst of cascading international crises, Europe's leaders are set to meet for an unusual Saturday summit.