If you are a landlord who controls premises, it is crucial for you to understand the dangers of Legionella. By law, it is mandatory for you to prevent the spread of these dangerous bacteria. Many legal documents provide a comprehensive framework to control, prevent and assess the risks of these bacteria. It is entirely possible by considering certain precautions.
The employer or landlord also must control the spread of this bacteria strand, as you are known for being responsible for the safety and health of the people working or living under you. There are different ways to ensure that. We are going to shed some light on this matter.
- Risk Identification and Legionnaires Risk Assessment
- Risk Management
- Risk Prevention
- Maintenance of the Correct Records
Risk Identification and Risk Assessment
It is your responsibility as a landowner to assess the risks if any. You can do it yourself, or ask for help. There are many professionals available who can help you out with proper guidance and advice.
They are usually consultancies.
Whoever is managing the risks needs to understand how the water systems work entirely. It also includes the different equipment, like showers, heat exchangers, pump, etc., that are a part of the system. Check whether there could be a condition the system could be exposed to the bacteria. You need to see that –
- The temperature of the water is in between 20 to 45 degrees centigrade.
- Water is re-circulated and stored in the system.
- There are nutrient sources in the system, like biofilms, organic matter, scale, sludge, or rust.
- The conditions foster the growth of the bacteria.
- There is a possibility of producing water droplets. If yes, how can they be dispersed into a wide open area?
Legionella risk assessment would include:
- Managing responsibilities
- Training and competence of the key personnel
- Identification of risk sources
- Preventing the risk sources from appearing
- Inspection, monitoring, and maintenance procedures
- Keeping records of the monitoring process
- Reviewing the risk assessment on a regular basis
If there is a risk, you need to hire somebody who is competent enough to carry out the job that ultimately meets the health and safety requirements. The person must have the necessary skills, competence, sufficient authority, experience, and knowledge of the system.
In order to prevent the risk of the bacteria, you need to consider the kind of water system you have and follow the instructors judiciously. The key factor is to maintain, design, and operate the water services by following the conditions that will control the growth of the Legionella bacteria.
When you have more than one employee, you need to keep track of all the follow-ups and rounds you take. Everything should be noted down for future references.
Lastly, make sure that you follow all your duties accurately. If you have a system but nobody to follow it, it couldn’t be any more useless. Hence, make sure that you are doing your duties.