Disinfection of hot tubs contaminated with Legionella
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Disinfection of hot tubs contaminated with Legionella

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    Hot tubs that are not properly operated and maintained can provide an ideal environment for spreading Legionella, the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease and Pontiac fever. The phrase “hot tubs” in this document includes hot tubs, whirlpool spas, and hydrotherapy spas. Outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease and Pontiac fever have been linked to hot tubs contaminated with Legionella. Failing to regularly scrub hot tub surfaces to remove biofilm, the slime layer that protects Legionella from disinfectants, and failing to maintain adequate disinfectant levels promotes Legionella growth. Hot tub users can be infected with Legionella when they breathe in tiny water droplets that contain Legionella. CDC has not made any recommendations regarding routine laboratory testing for Legionella, because proper hot tub maintenance and operation should prevent the growth of Legionella. However, if cases of Legionnaires’ disease or Pontiac fever are linked to a hot tub, it is important to take samples for laboratory testing and then disinfect the hot tub to prevent others from being infected. CS233597 hot-tub-disinfection.pdf
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