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Why it pays to be rapid in detecting Legionella

Why it pays to be rapid in detecting Legionella


Clearwater Technology

Legionella bacteria could be thriving in your water system. Contaminated water droplets can easily become airborne through cooling tower aerosols which are common in so many buildings and facilities. Inhaling a contaminated water droplet can result in Legionnaire’s disease, a type of pneumonia that can be fatal.

The risk exists in various industries and sectors. In the healthcare sector, new-born and elderly immunosuppressed patients are more likely to be affected should an outbreak occur.

How do you control the Legionella risk?

Codes of practice provide essential on monitoring and managing the Legionella risk. Approved Codes of Practice (ACoP) L8 outlines requirements for the control of Legionella bacteria in water systems. A further set of guidelines titled HSG 274 outline what can be done to comply with L8. 

Key areas that must undergo stringent risk assessments are cooling towers, hot and cold water systems. Any system that produces airborne water droplets presents a risk and must be assessed. Obsolete pipework and hemp joins must also be assessed as these are prime environments for Legionella growth.

How do you detect Legionella in your water system?

On a regular basis, cold storage tanks, hot water heaters (calorifiers) and cooling towers should be examined. Corrosion, scale and sediment are all warning signs that Legionella bacteria may be present in the system. 

While remedial action will remove risk, contamination could already be taking place. Recent developments in Legionella monitoring mean that the risk can now detected quicker than ever before.

HCRapid 25, an on-site Legionella testing kit developed by Clearwater means that Legionella bacteria can be detected in your water system in just 25 minutes compared to the typical 10-12 days it takes using other water sampling methods.

Clearwater’s own engineers have been using Rapid 25 as part of the risk assessment programme we offer to our customers but Rapid 25 is easy to use for your own personnel tasked with water maintenance or risk assessment.

Detecting Legionella in just 25 minutes allows remedial action to take place quicker, significantly reducing the opportunity for human infection. Not only does this provide peace of mind in knowing that the people in and around your premises will be free from the risk, it will also make compliance quicker and easier to govern.

Who can help my business with risk assessment?

Many buildings and facilities have managers tasked with overseeing risk assessments but this isn’t always the case. In some cases, the relevant level of expertise may be missing.

Often if this is the case, risk assessment is outsourced to a third party that does possess the expertise as well as the skills to carry out remedial work required. 

When searching for an experienced provider it’s important to ensure you’re being offered more than a one-size-fits-all solution and that the provider can instead tailor a bespoke risk assessment and risk management solution to your specific business and its individual requirements. 

If you’d like to know more about Clearwater’s Rapid 25 solution of risk assessment programmes, get in touch with our team of our friendly and informative risk assessment experts.

Clearwater Technology will be present at our FMP Event at Oxford University on Thursday 4th April 2019. To learn more, contact GB Intelligence on 01633 749520 or at 

To learn about other events like this, visit here

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