Legionella Checklist: Is Your Business Up to Date?
By law, businesses need to ensure that staff, customers and building users are protected from the risks posed by Legionella bacteria. Legionella bacteria can, when inhaled, cause potentially fatal cases of Legionnaires Disease, and the responsibility for minimising the risk of this happening falls on businesses, landlords and building owners.
If you’re not sure whether your business has covered all the bases for legionella compliance, our quick checklist will help you understand your current status, and the next steps to make sure your business is safe and compliant.
First things first…
1. Have your building(s) got a valid Legionella Risk Assessment?
A Legionella Risk Assessment involves checking your water system for conditions in which legionella bacteria will thrive. This includes standing water, fittings that produce spray or aerosol which can be inhaled, water that contains rust, organic matter or biofilm, and water that is kept between 20 and 45°C.
By law, businesses must have a legionella risk assessment carried out on their property. If you do not have proof of a risk assessment carried out by a competent assessor, it’s very important that you get one arranged as soon as possible.
2. Is your risk assessment up to date?
Legally, legionella risk assessments need to be accurate and kept up to date. However, we would always recommend an annual review to be certain that your water system does not cause harm to any building users.
3. Have there been any changes to your water system since your last risk assessment?
If you’ve made changes to your system, risk assessment review will be required. This is to ensure that the changes you have made will not increase the risk of legionella in your system, and ensure your business remains compliant with the relevant health and safety legislation (Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) or the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (1994).
After your risk assessment…
4. Have the relevant remedial works been carried out?
Your risk assessment may identify areas in which your water system needs to be altered to ensure that legionella risk is minimised. These changes should be implemented as soon as possible by qualified professionals. Once these changes have been made, it’s important to arrange a risk assessment review to ensure that the works have solved the identified issues.
5. Are your team aware of the required legionella management procedures?
Your risk assessment should also point out management processes that need to be maintained. This may include ensuring outlets such as showers and taps are used regularly to reduce the risk of standing water where bacteria can build up. To ensure your staff maintain these processes, staff awareness training is recommended to ensure any potential risks can be spotted.
6. Are you maintaining compliance throughout the year?
In order to ensure your business is compliant with legislation and your building users are protected from the risk of legionella, detailed records of your legionella management processes need to be kept and regular maintenance of your water system needs to be carried out. Risk assessments need to be carried out on all water systems and reviewed regularly to ensure any changes are documented and that the control measures remain effective.
Total Water Solutions’ expert Legionella team are qualified and experience in carrying out legionella risk assessments, remedial work, training and maintenance. For more information, or to book a service, get it in touch.
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