Yorkshire Water escapes criminal case over crypto outbreak

Yorkshire Water has escaped prosecution over a serious outbreak of crytposporidiosis in the Hull area at the beginning of 1990. The conclusion by the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) that evidence linking the outbreak to procedures at a water treatment works would not sustain a successful prosecution is bound to raise questions about the offence provisions in drinking water legislation.

The cryptosporidiosis incident began in December 1989 and continued for several weeks into 1990. Almost 500 people were affected (ENDS Report 182, pp 7-8).

The outcome of the DWI's two-year investigation into the outbreak was announced in a parliamentary answer by Environment Secretary Michael Howard on 16 July.

The DWI's investigation was based on a report by the Outbreak Control Group, published in March 1991. The DWI subsequently

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