Cryptosporidium Holiday Illness Claims – Lurking Beneath the Water!


Have you suffered holiday illness due to swimming in a dirty hotel pool or onsite water park?

Swimming is a fun, active, and healthy way to spend time on holiday, but recently we have seen an increase in the number of holiday illness claims caused by contaminated water from dirty swimming pools or water parks. Recreational water illnesses can result in a wide variety of unpleasant symptoms including gastrointestinal – skin – ear – respiratory – eye – neurological and wound infections.

Dirty Swimming Pools can cause Holiday IllnessesOur specialist Holiday Illness Claims team believes outbreaks of recreational gastric illness have emerged as a major challenge to the tour operator because of the efficient transmission of parasites such as cryptosporidium in water - this is particular true in all-inclusive hotels.

At Simpson Millar LLP we believe waterborne holiday illness claims are avoidable if tour operators work closely with their suppliers to ensure that they offer safe and healthy holidays at every opportunity.

Cryptosporidium outbreaks from dirty swimming pools or water parks could be eradicated if water is filtered using modern techniques which involve the frequent turn over of pool water.

Simon Lomax, Simpson Millar’s Holiday Illness Claims manager says:

"Holiday makers should be educated and provided with clear and concise information from its tour operator highlighting their own responsibility in ensuring they and other hotel guests have a safe holiday free from illness."

"The more active holiday makers like to splash in hotel pools and enjoy some of the wettest and wildest water parks available. Many tour operators now offer hotels which include large swimming pools and water parks as part of the package holiday. First Choice Holidays, for example, has a brochure dedicated to Splash Hotels which incorporates aqua parks included within the price of the holiday."

We will be closely monitoring the following hotels for outbreaks of holiday illness or cryptosporidium:

Cryptosporidium and other holiday illness claims can be eradicated if tour operators adhere to the guidance provide by their industry representative (the Federation of Tour Operators) in relation to the prevention of cryptosporidium outbreaks in pool water.

We expect them to monitor cases of cryptosporidium and collate counts of cases by date to reduce and prevent further instances of sickness. Such monitoring is regarded as best practice, but requires setting up systems and training staff to do this surveillance, which must be supported by clear protocols for action where outbreaks are detected. This differs from the standard notification system which only records cases of food poisoning or other gastric illness, with laboratory proven identification.

In line with responsibilities created by the 1990 EU Package Travel Directive, holiday company’s have a legal obligation to pay compensation if their hotel suppliers fail to operate recreational facilities to reasonable safety standards albeit guided by local hygiene practices.

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