The Reason For Legionella Risk Assessments Explained
Legionella risk assessments can be confusing things if you’re not aware of the reasons behind them, or why they are so important. We often get asked whether these risk assessments are a legal requirement, or simply a ‘nice to have’, and this is a good question.
The short answer is yes, a legionella risk assessment is absolutely a legal requirement. It states within the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) that anyone in control of a premises, including employers, must ensure that the health and safety of their employees, and anyone else within the building, is a priority, and that everything that can be done should be done to make this so.
Moving on from there, the Approved Code of Practice and Guidance on Legionella Regulations (ACOP L8), says explicitly that employees must do all they can to control the risk of exposure to legionella bacteria, and ideally to prevent it altogether. Even the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) includes biological agents such as legionella in its framework of risk. One of its essential elements is having a risk assessment.
This means that every water system with a building will need a legionella risk assessment attached to it, although do bear in mind that in many cases no additional work will need to be done if the risk is low and the control measures in place to prevent legionella bacteria (as far as practicable) are suitable.
The risk assessment is, at its very basic level, a document to show that you, as the responsible person for health and safety within the building, are complying with the law and are aware of what you need to do.
Contact Assured Water Hygiene today for more information about your risk assessment and ensuring it is in place and entirely up to date.