Meningitis water warning

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The Independent Online
JUNIOR FOOTBALLERS were warned not to share water bottles during games this weekend as the meningitis outbreak spread nationwide.

The GT Football League issued the warning to all 450 of its teams in South Yorkshire, north Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. In Cheshire a vaccination of 3,000 children began after three teenagers from the same town were afflicted and one of them died. Health chiefs sent advice to parents in another Cheshire town where a 17-year-old girl died and an 11-year-old boy is ill.

There have been 14 confirmed deaths from the disease since Christmas, stretching from the south coast to Scotland. Socialising over Christmas and the New Year is partly to blame for the rise at this time of year. But doctors also fear that they are facing a more aggressive form of the disease.

The prospect of thousands of children gathering for football matches across the country at the weekend and sharing water bottles at half-time prompted the warning from the GT Football League.