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What is Legionnaires' disease?

Legionnaires' disease is one of a number of infections of the lung caused by legionella bacteria and can be fatal. Other infections caused by legionella, collectively known as Legionellosis, include Pontiac Fever and Lochgoilhead Fever are far less severe and often go undetected. Infections are caused by inhaling water droplets containing legionell can affect anyone, although persons with underlying health conditions and weakened immune systems are at a greater risk.

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Are there legal requirements for controlling legionella in water systems?

The UK's Health & Safety at Work Act requires employers and landlords to ensure employees and other members of the public are protected from the risk of injury or ill health from workplaces and work activites. The Act also makes provision for the HSE to produce Approved Code of Practices (ACOP) which provide guidance on compliance with law. ACOP L8 provides guidance on how to comply with the law with regards to legionella, and requires the following to be in place:




  • A suitable and sufficient assessment of the risk, undertaken by a competent person

  • A Scheme of Control (aka Water Safety Plan) that sets out how the organisation will minimise and control the identified risks

  • Plans/drawings of the water systems to aid the application of control

  • An appointed "Responsible Person" who must be competent or have access to competent support, with the authority to ensure the scheme of control is implemented

  • Records of testing and inspection of the control measures

  • All persons working on the water system must be trained and aware of the risks


Peninsula Water Hygiene Ltd can assist you with any aspect of the above

For more information on our services please contact us

Things are a little different in for healthcare premises. Check out our healthcare page for more detail

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