Spa pools treated after Legionella bacteria detected

Last Updated : 18 Feb 2016

Spa pools at Auckland Council’s leisure facilities have been given an additional chemical clean as a precautionary measure following the detection of Legionella bacteria in two spa pools in the council’s network.

A spa pool at the Tepid Baths was closed on 11 February following the detection of the bacteria, and treated according to procedures recommended by the Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS).

The pool will only be reopened once negative test results have been returned, which is likely to take two weeks.

This follows a similar incident at the Manurewa Pool and Leisure Centre in December. As with the Tepid Baths, the spa pool was closed, treated and retested, and only reopened once a negative test was returned.

The Manukau pool continues to undergo regular testing for the bacteria. Results from the second round of testing were received yesterday (Monday 16 February) and remain negative.

Routine testing 

The bacteria was detected during testing by ARPHS to identify possible sources for two separate cases of Legionella.

Auckland Council’s Manager Leisure, Rob McGee, says that in both cases the team acted on advice from council’s own environmental health team and ARPHS and immediately closed and treated the spa pools affected.

"As this is the second event in a three-month period, we have taken the additional precautionary step of treating all 18 of our spa pools.

“On top of that, over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll be working on a programme to ensure that every spa pool in the network undergoes an extra deep clean,” says Mr McGee.

Testing being reviewed 

Mr McGee says Auckland Council takes health protection seriously and a review of current cleaning and testing processes will be undertaken alongside the environmental health team.

“Our current processes fully comply with, or exceed, New Zealand Standards. However if we can make any improvements to reduce the chance of the bacteria being present, we will.

"In the meantime, following the mitigation measures that we have already put in place, and liaison with key parties, we are confident that the risk to public health is low.”

Read the Auckland Regional Public Health Service statement or for more information visit

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