Legionella control expert Swiftclean Building Services has welcomed the recent changes to the L8 Approved Code of Practice for Legionella control by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), which more clearly spells out the key aspects of maintaining a healthy, legionella-free water system. The areas highlighted in the new version of the code are; risk assessment requirements; responsibilities of the appointed competent person under the law, known as the responsible person; the control scheme; the review of control measures; and duties and responsibilities of those involved in the supply of water systems. This makes the responsible person’s obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act and COSHH Regulations clearer than ever. However, it is still important to enlist expert help in creating and maintaining robust legionella control processes, says Swiftclean.
“It’s excellent to clarify the duties of the responsible person under law for the control of legionella, but we would still recommend that you make a point of checking every year that you don’t need a change of legionella risk assessment,” says Anthony Hoare, Swiftclean’s Head of Surveying and legionella control expert.
Swiftclean’s Managing Director, Gary Nicholls agrees, “An annual check is wise, because there is a huge legal burden on the responsible person to comply with their obligations, and this is still a complex subject. There is a new technical guidance document as well as the Approved Code of Practice, and it is certainly worth getting expert advice on whether you need to do anything to be sure that you are fully compliant. At this stage, the technical guide is an interim document and there will be a new one in 2014. Many will still find this an area in which expert advice is invaluable, especially when the consequences of getting this wrong can be severe.”
The clarification is particularly welcome, says Swiftclean, following cases of outbreaks such as the one at Basildon Hospital, which was heavily fined recently, following deaths due to two separate incidences of legionella in the hospital.
Swiftclean is one of the UK’s leading providers of legionella management services, as well as ductwork cleaning and specialist grease management services.