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Absolute water Compliance - FAQ'S

  • What is Legionnaires disease?
    Legionnaires Disease is a form of pneumonia which can potentially be fatal. The Disease can occur when exposed to dangerous levels of the Legionella bacterium.
  • Is it a legal requirement to have a Legionella risk assessment?
    Conducting a legionella risk assessment on your site is a legal requirement. The requirement for conducting a legionella risk assessment is defined under the following legislation: The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1999 (COSHH)
  • Who is the legionella responsible person?
    A responsible person is appointed by the duty holder in writing to oversee the legionella management. The legionella responsible person should have suitable training, have adequate knowledge of the water systems within their building, and have the ability to instigate corrective action without constraint by budget.
  • What are the consequences if my organisation does not conduct a Legionella Risk assessment?
    As an employer, business owner or landlord the onus is on you to take responsibility to ensure the risk of legionella disease is prevented. Those responsible for buildings need to prove that they have assessed the risks and are taking active steps to reduce the risks.
  • What is the cost of a Legionella risk assessment?
    The cost of a Legionella risk assessment is completely dependent on the size and complexity of the building and its water systems. Book in a free survey to find out more.
  • What conditions promote the growth of Legionella bacteria.
    It is important to understand the conditions that can aid and promote Legionella bacteria. >Poor water management and limited knowledge such as no legionella training; is one of the biggest contributing factors to legionella outbreaks >Temperatures between 20-45°C, >Stagnation; any area where water isn’t moving through the system sufficiently such as a little used outlet or an over-sized water tank >Presence of a food source such as scale, rust, or sediment >Dissemination such as from a cooling tower, shower head or water striking a surface >Susceptible people. Some people are more at risk due to circumstance such as being immuno-supressed, smokers, or elderly
  • What is a legionella risk assessment?
    A Legionella Risk Assessment is an assessment of the risk factors associated with legionnaires’ disease. It considers; the formation of water droplets, the condition of the water system, the temperature of the system water, the turnover of the system water, the susceptibility of persons exposed, and the density of the persons exposed.
  • Is it a legal requirement to have a legionella risk assessment?
    It is a legal requirement to have a legionella risk assessment. As a Duty Holder you have a legal obligation to ensure risks are identified and suitably managed, this includes exposure to legionella bacteria. Failure to do so could lead to prosecution under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.
  • How often do Landlords have to do a legionella risk assessment?
    There should be a set frequency determined by the Duty Holder and this should be decided proportional to the risk of the water system. A typically suitable timeframe to review the assessment is every 2 years.
  • Can I test for legionella myself?
    You shouldn’t test for legionella yourself. To ensure accuracy of the sample, it should be taken by a person deemed competent to do so and tested in a UKAS accredited lab.
  • Who Can Carry Out a Legionella Risk Assessment?
    A Legionella risk assessment must be carried out by a suitably trained and competent person. A risk assessor would generally be a consultant who has suitable experience, knowledge, and relevant qualifications. They may be a member of a professional group such as the water management society.
  • Can I take water Samples Myself?
    You shouldn’t take legionella samples yourself. To ensure accuracy of the sample, it should be taken by a person deemed competent to do so and tested in a UKAS accredited lab.
  • Who Can Clean Water Tanks?
    Water tanks can be cleaned by someone who is competent and trained to do so. Careful consideration should be taken with tanks that supply drinking water as this procedure carried out incorrectly could result in contamination to the water supply. Some water tanks are deemed to be a confined space and specialist training / equipment is required to ascertain the risk and implement a safe system of work. Once a tank has been entered or touched with any requirement it should be disinfected as per BS EN 806-5:2012, BS 8558:2015 and BS PD 855468:2015.
  • Can I Clean a Water Tank Myself?
    Water tanks can be cleaned by someone who is competent and trained to do so. Careful consideration should be taken with tanks that supply drinking water as this procedure carried out incorrectly could result in contamination to the water supply. Some water tanks are deemed to be a confined space and specialist training / equipment is required to ascertain the risk and implement a safe system of work. Once a tank has been entered or touched with any requirement it should be disinfected as per BS EN 806-5:2012, BS 8558:2015 and BS PD 855468:2015.
  • How Often Should I Clean a Water Tank
    A water tank should be cleaned regularly although there is no specific rule to determine this. You can choose to rely upon an annual inspection carried out as part of your control scheme however a good practice would be once per year, especially if the tank supplies drinking water.
  • How Do You Prevent Legionnaires Disease?
    You should have a legionella risk assessment carried out to determine the level of risk upon your site. The findings of the report should be acted upon, including appointing the correct person to take responsibility for controlling the risk, creating and implementing a suitable written scheme, training staff where necessary and carrying out any remedial actions to reduce the risk as far as reasonably practical.

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