The bacteria that causes Legionnaires disease is abundant in nature. The bacteria mainly live in water, for example stagnant water and ponds, where it does not usually cause problems. Increases in the numbers of the Legionella occur when water is used by us, humans, in water systems, from general washing to the heating and cooling of food stuffs. Outbreaks occur in these purpose-built water systems where temperatures are warm enough to encourage growth of the bacteria, e.g. in cooling towers, evaporative condensers and Jacuzzi’s and from water used for domestic purposes in buildings such as hotels.
To combat this the HSE (Health & Safety Executive) have issued, in 2000 the third edition of the Approved Code of Practice ‘The Control of Legionella Bacteria in Water Systems’. This document gives guidance on controlling bacteria in water systems and recommendations as to the best practice for the control of proliferation.
is Legionnaire's Disease?
Legionnaire's Disease is a type of pneumonia which is contracted when the bacteria ‘Legionella pneumophila’ is inhaled, this is normally via droplets of water suspended in air which contain the ‘Legionella pneumophila’ bacteria.
Where does it come from?
The bacteria grows and multiplies in badly controlled and maintained water systems. When these badly controlled and maintained water systems are open and exposed to the atmosphere droplets of water containing bacteria can be released in to the atmosphere.
Who Controls the spread of Legionnaire's Disease?
To prevent an outbreak of Legionnaire's Disease ALL companies that operate water systems must comply with the regulations. These regulations require them to maintain, check, manage and treat any systems which could possibly cause the spread of Legionella.
Do I need to have a Risk Assessment?
I you have a water system that heats or cools water with the potential to create an aerosol then you will need a Risk Assessment. Please contact us for details & information.