Preventing Legionella 20th September 2021

Preventing Legionella

Legionella Disease is a serious type of Pneumonia (Lung Infection) caused by the legionella bacteria. It’s usually found in freshwater sources, whether that be a commercial or residential environment.

When your water source or storage tank isn’t fitted or maintained properly and to HSE regulations the bacteria can multiply and cause illness.

In this blog, we’re going to make you aware of the dangers of legionella, explain what happens if you contract the disease and share our advice on preventing legionella.

How Do You Prevent Legionella?

Preventing legionella is possible under certain circumstances. However, some water systems are at greater risk of being affected by Legionella bacteria than others. Cooling towers are a classic example of this.

Legionella is that serious, someone in your company could be held accountable and prosecuted if an individual contracted the disease on site.

Before knowing the full extent of the bacterium, a risk assessment must be undertaken. Health and Safety Executives (HSE) consider any risks to be a potential starting point.

The legionella risk assessment is next, this should identify any risks, and how they can be suitably managed. The management of the risks can then be tackled either through complete prevention or through control.

Who Is At Risk For Contacting Legionella And What Are The Symptoms?

Healthy people have a lower risk of developing the disease. Those at a higher risk of becoming ill include the following:

  • People older than 50 years of age.
  • People living with a chronic lung disease like emphysema or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
  • People with a weakened immune system.
  • People with certain chronic health conditions like diabetes, cancer, or kidney failure.
  • Current or former smokers.

Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia – the symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Headaches

Can Legionella Be Cured?

Legionnaires’ disease is treated with antibiotics and most cases of this illness can be treated successfully. Healthy people usually get better after being sick with Legionnaires’ disease, but they often need care in the hospital.

What Kills Legionella

Legionella thrives in warm water environments. It is commonly found in water tanks, hot water heaters, potable water supplies, hot tubs, cooling towers, fountains, swimming pools, etc. The bacteria multiplies in conditions between 68 – 122 °F.

It is recommended to have a water heater set at a safe hot water temperature of 140°F. At this temperature, legionella will die within 32 minutes. The Legionella disinfection range is between 158 – 176 °F.

Our Legionella Services

Landlords and other business owners should follow their legal duties of ensuring all water systems on their premises are properly maintained and operated. This is how we; Cold Water Storage can help!

As a landlord or business owner, you’re in control of your properties and therefore responsible for preventing Legionella. This means that every premise requires a valid risk assessment. Included in our Legionella services is a prevention and a management plan. The premise equipment should be reviewed regularly to identify any changes or invalid safety checks.

Our risk assessment allows us to fully understand your integrated system on-site, we examine your water tanks, pipes, and any other assets. From this inspection, we would then conclude your system using three ranks:

  • No foreseeable risk
  • Risk is low and is being properly managed to comply with the law
  • Your system is causing a risk, changes need to be made

We have a team full of expert engineers that can deal with each rank. They have a vast amount of knowledge about Legionella and can suggest several options depending on budget and risk factors.

Our Legionella service includes:

  • Description of the system
  • Training of key personnel
  • Identified potential risk sources
  • Means of preventing the risk or controls in place
  • Monitoring, inspection and maintenance procedures
  • Records of the monitoring results and inspection checks carried out
  • Full schematic diagram of the water system in place
  • Arrangements to review the risk assessment regularly

Get In Touch

Cold Water Storage has a combined 30 years of experience in the water hygiene and legionella industry.

Our knowledge and a significant amount of experience allow us to thoroughly assess your water tank and offer several expert solutions, including preventing legionella.

We can professionally clean and disinfect all domestic and industrial water systems to ensure you meet HSE regulations.

If you believe you require a risk assessment because you’re unaware if you meet regulations or are spreading legionella, then please contact our team today. You can call us on 0113 229 5062 or email us at