Cardiff students in lockdown in halls forced to move due to potentially infected water supply
Students are to be moved to Cardiff Met and hotels
Cardiff University has sent an email to students remaining in Uni residences warning of a “possible issue with the water supply”. Due to the “potential low risk” of Legionella, which they stress has not yet been confirmed, they have made the decision to temporarily move students whilst they carry out “routine remediation”.
Students will be moved to hotels or Cardiff Metropolitan University accommodation. In addition, the University will provide these students with £30/day to cover the cost of food, and taxis for transport will be made available.
Legionella is a group of bacteria which causes a pneumonia-type illness called Legionnaires’ disease and a mild flu-like illness called Pontiac fever. The email advises students to be aware of the legionnaire symptoms and contact NHS Direct on 111 if they think they may be affected.
Whilst arrangements to move students are being made, they are being told to only use cold water from their kitchen tap and to ensure the lid is down when they flush the toilet. This means students should avoid using their university accommodation shower.
Students in Senghennydd Court Houses L, N and P as well as in Talybont South House 9 will be able to return to their current accommodation within five days. Meanwhile, remaining students are expected to have to be relocated for four weeks whilst “the complete programme of works to remedy the situation is complete”.
The university reassures that this situation is not related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The relocation of these students follows several issues that have arisen for Cardiff University students staying within university residences in the past few weeks. Students have made complaints of being charged twice their rent after vacating their premises and that their belongings have been removed whilst moving home for lockdown.
A Cardiff University spokesperson said: “In the interests of openness and transparency, we have written to all students still in our residences advising them of a low risk of legionella, if essential and routine remediation is not undertaken.”
The spokesperson wanted to make clear that “the presence of legionella has not been confirmed’ and the instructions to students regarding showers and toilet lids are “precautionary measures”.
According to the statement, “The final arrangements are being put in place and we expect most students will be moved to alternative accommodation today (Wednesday 6th May).”
“We are acutely aware this has caused concern at an already difficult and stressful time, however, we will not compromise on our students’ safety. We are sorry and have apologised to those students for the inconvenience it will cause. All available support is being made offered.”