Legionella Poses a significant health and safety concern that Rail operators must take seriously.
As reported by BBC News today, legionella bacteria has been found on Thameslink trains .
Legionella can potentially thrive in any water systems, one particular area for concern would be carriage wash machines, especially where water is recycled.
The necessity for periodic evaluation on trains to assess the potential contamination of Legionella with the aim to drive decontamination efforts in the absence of specific guidelines. Legionella and Fire Safe Services would always recommend that an environmental surveillance programme, followed by decontamination procedures when necessary, would decrease the total bacterial load, thereby protecting the health of travellers and workers.
The particular characteristics of water supply facilities on trains, which work by gravity at a low pressure, and the lack of showers reduce the possibility of the formation of aerosol, which is potentially dangerous for Legionellosis.
Public health programmes should focus on reducing the risk for LD among travellers.
Managing Director Steve Morris said “In addition to cruise ships and ferries , the routine monitoring of water on board trains must be considered an essential measure of primary prevention for guaranteeing water safety and, consequently, to avoid cases of Legionnaires Disease. For these reasons, the drafting of guidelines for Legionnaires Disease prevention on public transportation may be necessary to protect the health of travellers and workers”
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