Legionella Testing

Sampling for Legionella Bacteria in Water Systems

Legionella testing and bacteria water sampling provides another level of legionella risk management. Our testing adheres to the industry recommendations and approved codes of practice or ACoP. Specifically, our testing follows the AcOP L8 & BS 7592:2008 or Sampling for Legionella bacteria in water systems.
In our standard testing, we also sample the water for other potentially harmful bacteria aside from legionella. We also test for E.Coli and Psuedomonas. We identify the Total Viable Counts or TVCs of these and other water-based bacterium.

After sampling is conducted, the samples are immediately sent to our labs on the same day. These samples are analysed only in laboratories approved by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service. We provide a list of actionable recommendations as well as a full technical backup when we report on the results of our testing.


The Importance of Sampling for Legionella Bacteria in Water Systems

sampling-for-legionella-bacteria-in-water-systemsThe main purpose of bacteria water sampling is to ensure the quality of the water and keep occupants of premises safe. These tests will inform decisions and preventive measures in the future.

As for legionella testing, the Health & Safety Executive set guidelines for periodic water sampling to further make sure that their populations don’t exceed acceptable and safe levels. This recommendation also provides properties with assistance to achieve adequate control over the water system.

The recommended frequency of water sampling is influenced by the following factors:

  • The type of water system in the property
  • The level of inherent risk of contamination
  • Other specific considerations outlined in the legionella risk management


Are companies required by law to test for legionella?

They are under certain circumstances. Health and Safety Executive (HSE) regulations state that responsible parties – whether that is the business owner or the building owner – must test for legionella if there is a foreseeable risk of exposure. While there is certainly some room for interpretation regarding what constitutes “foreseeable risk”, companies face stiff penalties if anyone contracts Legionnaires Disease while on their premises.


The HSE regulations derive from the legal principle that employers and company owners have what is called a “duty of care” regarding people who work in or otherwise enter their premises. In plain English, that means you have a responsibility to ensure the health and safety of people who enter your office, factory or other facility.


Prevalence of legionella

sampling-for-legionella-bacteria-in-water-systems-code-of-practiceMany building and business owners in the UK are reluctant to have their water tested because they believe legionella and the resulting Legionnaires Disease to be essentially American problems. The disease was, after all, first identified in the US and named after the numerous members of the American Legion organisation who died from it.

After that initial outbreak, however, exhaustive research was conducted and scientists discovered legionella has been with us for some time and is a worldwide problem. The unfortunate fact is that legionella can thrive anywhere there is stagnant water from air conditioning units, fountains, ice machines, swimming pools and other sources.


Symptoms of Legionnaires Disease

Every building or business owner should be aware of the symptoms of Legionnaires Disease so that they can respond in an appropriate manner should an outbreak occur. Early symptoms include cough, chills, fever and shortness of breath. Over time it often morphs into a very serious type of pneumonia with a higher than average mortality rate. The bottom line is that not everyone exposed to legionella will become sick, but the ones that do will often become quite sick indeed.


Get in Touch With Clean Air UK

Legionella is a health threat that, like many other health issues, has been forced into the background lately by the coronavirus. But that does not mean it has gone away. In fact, early symptoms of Legionnaires Disease are not dissimilar to those of covid-19. Business owners need to be aware of that. But they should also know that having Clean Air UK in to test their water can go a long way toward keeping legionella at bay.


Interested in our services? You can talk to one of our experienced representatives on 0800 292 2400, send an email to info@cleanairuk.com with details of your enquiry, or click Contact Us Today to complete our simple enquiry form. A member of our sales team will aim to contact you within 24 hours of receipt of your enquiry.