Health

Legionella Risk Assessment For Landlords !

Legionella Risk Assessment

What Landlords Need to Know about the Legionella Risk Assessment

Landlords have the responsibility of ensuring that the rental property that they are in control of can make a profit. To be successful at doing this, they have even greater responsibilities. Part of these is making sure that the health and safety of all those who rent or visit these premises is a top priority. To accomplish this, they have to carry out a legionella risk assessment for any risk of a threat of Legionnaire’s Disease.

Why is there a Need for Legionella Risk Assessment for Landlords?

Many business industries are at risk for having to deal with Legionnaires disease, but some are more vulnerable than others. The rental industry is one of those types of businesses that have to be astute at monitoring the conditions that could be favourable for Legionnaires Disease. This means having the right checks and control measures in place for contamination of the water system by the Legionella bacteria.

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Legionnaire’s disease is a type of pneumonia that is contracted from a specific type of bacteria. It can be spread through contaminated water. The water sources in rental properties can create the right atmosphere for the growth of these bacteria.

There are regulations in place for landlords for Legionella testing. This is done by performing legionella water testing. The UK is committed to keeping Legionnaire’s disease under control. The frequency in which this form of disease testing is to be carried out is determined by the results of the legionnaires risk assessment and the risk factors that are present.

What is involved in a Legionella Risk Assessment?

The assessment has to be able to identify what risks may be present and what can be implemented for the prevention of the Legionella bacteria. The assessment includes;

The method in which the water is stored and re-circulated.

  • The water temperature.
  • Sources for the formation and growth of the bacteria such as rust, scale or some type of organic matter.
  • The formation and disbursement of water droplets.
  • Infection susceptibility for employees, residents and visitors.
  • Responsibilities of managers.
  • Controls and prevention.
  • Monitoring and inspection.
  • Record keeping.
  • Frequency.

What Legionella Risk Assessment Demands Do Landlords Face?

Landlords must comply with the risk assessment legionella regulations. These pertain to the L8ACOP, which is the Code of Practice. This dictates the requirement for water testing which is the approved assessment for this form of disease testing. The proper assessment will allow for the identification of risks that are present, as well as the source of the risk. It will allow for control measures to be put into place for managing those risks. One of the additional responsibilities that come with legionnaires disease testing is keeping accurate records of what actions have been implemented for the monitoring and control of the identified risks.  These records will also be an indicator of how often the risk assessment is being conducted. The landlord has the task of assigning a responsible individual to take on the responsibility of meeting the legionella regulations.

Water Treatment Risk Assessment

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What Are the Repercussions for Not Following Legionella Regulations?

The repercussions for not following the legionella regulations are widespread. There is the risk that the bacteria will be present and will go unattended to. With the end result being a legionnaire’s disease breakout that can have serious consequences for all those infected with it. This may result in the government taking some form of action for not complying with the water testing assessment that is mandatory with L8ACOP. Then added to this is the risk of lost property rental income.

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What Solutions are in Place to Assist Landlords in the Control of Legionnaire’s Disease?

With the importance that comes with this water testing regulation for some landlords it may raise a concern as to the risk assessment cost. To do proper disease testing, it is best put into the hand of professionals that specialise in this type of service.  The Companies that are trained to provide a legionella assessment may be able to offer services such as;

  • Performing a legionella survey analysis.
  • Conducting the regulated legionella risk assessment.
  • Devising a prevention plan to help control the legionella risks.

The regulations for risk assessment do not dictate that the landlords must use professionals for legionnaire’s disease testing, but for those in charge of property rentals who want peace of mind in knowing that the risk assessment has been conducted by experts then this is a wise investment. When the repercussions of legionnaire’s disease are equated against the reasonable risk assessment cost, it makes more sense to put this disease testing in the hands of those who have been trained in performing a detailed risk assessment.

Legionella Risk Assessment in a Commercial Property

Legionella Risk Assessment & commercial drinking water

What are the Benefits of a Proper Legionella Assessment?

When UK landlords are considering their responsibilities in respect to the legionella regulations, it is prudent to consider the benefits of an extensive legionella assessment being carried out by professionals who specialise in this. These benefits can include;

  • Relying on experts to identify risks.
  • Expertise on hand to know how to go about proper water testing for the Legionella bacteria.
  • Professionals able to make recommendations based on their findings.
  • The proper equipment and resources needed to carry out the proper water testing that is needed.
  • Landlords have the peace of mind of knowing that a proper survey is being carried out.
  • Although a legionella testing certificate is not required it serves as proof that a proper water testing assessment has been properly carried out.  
  • Credible landlords take the health and safety of their tenants and their visitors seriously. They would rather deal with a risk assessment cost and know for sure that there are no concerns concerning their rental properties and legionnaire’s disease.
  • By having a proper disease testing conducted the landlord is protecting the reputation of their rental property. This is important when it comes to finding reliable tenants who insist on living in accommodations that are safe for their health.
  • Landlords who use professional risk assessment experts can rely on these experts for helping the landlord implement a prevention plan and control measures.
  • Once a survey and risk assessment has been completed by the professionals, the landlord will have a clearer idea as to the frequency in which further testing may be needed.

These are all important benefits of professional legionella water testing.

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Top 10 Legionnaires Disease Headlines

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
HSE

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