Category Archives: Water

Research – Using light emitting diodes at 450 nm for in vitro treatment of water intended for human consumption

Academic Journals 

CDC E.coli

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This study aimed to evaluate the in vitro antimicrobial effect of exposing raw water intended for human consumption to light (λ= 450 nm) and to investigate the correlation between the results obtained and physical and chemical parameters. Fifteen (15) samples of raw water were collected from households in a rural area of ​​Santo Antônio de Jesus – Bahia (Brazil), from November to December 2016. A 100 mL aliquot of each sample was exposed to a lighting system consisting of two high intensity light emitting diodes, with a wavelength of 450 nm and luminous flux of 200 lumens per 10 h. Quantifications of heterotrophic bacteria, total coliforms and temperature started at time zero and were done every two hours until the end of exposure to light. Bacteriological analysis was repeated after 72 h of being exposed to light. pH, dissolved oxygen and salinity analyses were performed before each experiment. After a 10h illumination at 450 nm light emitting diodes (LEDs), the dosage of light received by the water samples was 581.8 J/cm2. There was a significant reduction in the two bacteriological parameters analyzed after treatment (p = 0.000). There was an average decrease in heterotrophic bacteria counts from 3.44 to 1.86 log CFU/mL and total coliforms from 2.45 to 1.02 log CFU/mL. Mean reductions of heterotrophic bacteria were 97.01% and total coliforms were 95.61%. After 72 h, both counts increased; there was significant growth between heterotrophic bacteria (p = 0.000), but there was no significant growth for total coliforms (p = 0.058). pH (p = -0.981, p = 0.000), dissolved oxygen (ρ = -0.529, p = 0.043) and temperature (ρ = 0.521, p = 0.047) were related to the percentage reduction of heterotrophic bacteria. The method is shown to be effective in disinfecting raw water in vitro under different physical and chemical conditions.

Norway -Vibrio and Shewanella: Norway health officials warn of swimming in the warm waters

Outbreak News Today 

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Norwegian health authorities are warning people who are particularly vulnerable to Vibrio infections to take precautions while swimming as a number of serious bacterial infections ave been recorded.

This summer, six people have been severely ill with wound infection due to bacteria in seawater (five Vibrio and one Shewanella). The infection has occurred after swimming in the Oslo Fjord.

All adults over the age of 50 who have had a sore wound or have suffered sores during bathing in the Oslo Fjord in five different municipalities, Bærum, Oslo, Moss, Vestby and Fredrikstad.

In addition to the serious cases we know from earlier, there have been reports of 20 people who have had mild Vibrio infections on August 8th. These are sore infections and ear infections that often do not require treatment.

USA – Tests confirm E. coli in well water at Sevier County zip line attraction – 500 + Ill

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GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) – The Tennessee Department of Health says local testing has confirmed E.coli in well water at a zip line attraction in Sevier County following an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness among visitors.

The health department says testing showed E. coli and total coliforms in well water at CLIMB Works Zipline Canopy Tour. More testing is underway in Nashville.

Total coliforms include bacteria that are found in the soil, in water that has been influenced by surface water, and in human or animal waste. Fecal coliforms are the group of the total coliforms that are considered to be present specifically in the gut and feces of warm-blooded animals.

The state department of health says nearly 3,000 surveys were sent out to people who had booked zip line tours online with CLIMB Works since mid-June. As of Tuesday morning, 808 people had responded with 548 people from multiple states reporting illness, including diarrhea and vomiting.

USA – Colorado officials investigate Cryptosporidium, Giardia cases and possible link to Water World

Outbreak News Today 

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The Colorado state and Tri-County health departments are investigating whether illness is linked to a June 11-13 incident at Water World, during which untreated pond water might have contaminated pools and drinking fountains or might have been used to make food, ice and drinks at the park.

Two people who visited Water World during that time have been diagnosed with Crypto, and one person has been diagnosed with Giardia. Public health agencies are investigating whether these illnesses are associated with their visits to Water World.

Water World resolved the water contamination issue, and there does not appear to be ongoing contamination.

Research – Cryptosporidium, Pseudomonas and Legionella responsible for most outbreaks in swimming venues including hotel swimming pools

The figure is a visual abstract that details illnesses associated with recreational water and recommends how to stay healthy when swimming.

CDC-Outbreaks Associated with Treated Recreational Water — United States, 2000–2014

Outbreaks associated with exposure to treated recreational water can be caused by pathogens or chemicals in venues such as pools, hot tubs/spas, and interactive water play venues (i.e., water playgrounds). During 2000–2014, public health officials from 46 states and Puerto Rico reported 493 outbreaks associated with treated recreational water. These outbreaks resulted in at least 27,219 cases and eight deaths. Among the 363 outbreaks with a confirmed infectious etiology, 212 (58%) were caused by Cryptosporidium (which causes predominantly gastrointestinal illness), 57 (16%) by Legionella (which causes Legionnaires’ disease, a severe pneumonia, and Pontiac fever, a milder illness with flu-like symptoms), and 47 (13%) by Pseudomonas (which causes folliculitis [“hot tub rash”] and otitis externa [“swimmers’ ear”]). Investigations of the 363 outbreaks identified 24,453 cases; 21,766 (89%) were caused by Cryptosporidium, 920 (4%) by Pseudomonas, and 624 (3%) by Legionella. At least six of the eight reported deaths occurred in persons affected by outbreaks caused by Legionella. Hotels were the leading setting, associated with 157 (32%) of the 493 outbreaks. Overall, the outbreaks had a bimodal temporal distribution: 275 (56%) outbreaks started during June–August and 46 (9%) in March. Assessment of trends in the annual counts of outbreaks caused by Cryptosporidium, Legionella, or Pseudomonas indicate mixed progress in preventing transmission. Pathogens able to evade chlorine inactivation have become leading outbreak etiologies. The consequent outbreak and case counts and mortality underscore the utility of CDC’s Model Aquatic Health Code ( to prevent outbreaks associated with treated recreational water.

Hlavsa MC, Cikesh BL, Roberts VA, et al. Outbreaks Associated with Treated Recreational Water — United States, 2000–2014. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018;67:547–551. DOI:

Information – HSE Legionella ebulletin

HSE Legionella A

HSE Prosecution

On 20 April 2018, Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust was fined by Bristol Crown Court for failing to control the risk to patients from exposure to legionella bacteria in its water systems.  After the death of one of its patients from Legionnaires’ disease, HSE started an investigation and found that existing control measures were ineffective.  The Trust pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and has been fined £300,000 and ordered to pay costs of £37,451.78.  Full details of the case may be found at :

Cooling Tower Regulatory Intervention Programme

HM Principal Specialist Inspector of Health & Safety, Mr Duncan Smith will be giving an update on the findings of HSE’s latest cooling tower intervention programme to the Water Management Society Conference on 19 June 2018.  Details of the conference and how to register may be found at:

USA – Bronx: Legionnaires’ disease cases being investigated in Co-op City

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New York City health officials announced Wednesday that they are investigating three Legionnaires’ disease cases in three connected buildings at Co-op City in the Bronx. One person has died and to others in connecting buildings have been treated and released from the hospital.

Health officials urged residents of these buildings to seek treatment if they experience symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease. In addition, residents who are over 50 or have underlying medical conditions should avoid showering until the investigation is completed.

“We are in the process of undertaking an examining the water system, a process we take very seriously”, a top health officials noted.

Legionnaires’ disease is the cause of pneumonia where a non productive cough is typical. In addition, it is typified by headache, fever, body aches and occasionally abdominal pain and diarrhea.

Legionella bacteria are widely distributed, and normally grow best in warm water environments. They have been found in creeks and ponds, water taps (primarily hot water taps), hot water tanks, cooling towers and evaporative condensers, whirlpool spas, and decorative fountains.