If you have suffered from Legionnaire’s disease during a holiday abroad, you may be able to claim compensation for your holiday illness. The hotelier should have treated the infected system prior to its use. It should have been cleaned, chlorinated and heated or a combination of all three.
Legionnaire’s disease is a form of pneumonia caused by a bacterium known as Legionella Pneumophila. The diseases name originates from the first identified outbreak amongst a group of US ex-servicemen at a Philadelphia convention in 1976. It is commonly picked up at the start of the holiday season by travellers inhaling water aerosols from air conditioning units and showers that have not been used recently.
The disease starts with aches and pains followed rapidly by a rise in temperature, shivering attacks, cough and a shortness of breath. X-rays tend to show patchy areas of consolidation in the lungs, and the incubation period is 2-10 days.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), around 300 to 500 cases of Legionnaire’s Disease are reported in the UK every year, and around half of all cases are contracted abroad. Around one in ten cases proves fatal.
Some holidaymakers may only develop mild symptoms of the Legionella bacterium infection, which is called Pontiac fever and resembles flu. However, symptoms of the disease can be fatal and rapid diagnosis and hospital treatment are essential.
As well as showers and air conditioning units, legionella bacteria can also be found in:
If you have been diagnosed with Legionnaire’s Disease on holiday, contact one of our qualified lawyers for information about how to make a claim for compensation.
The amount of the compensation will depend on the severity of the illness you suffered, so get in touch as soon as possible for a free assessment of your holiday claim.