“Is Legionella Sampling Required?”
That’s one of the most common questions we hear from Building Owner, Managers, and responsible parties. It’s certainly an understandable question given the varying and often opaque guidance given from regulatory agencies and industry standards. Throw in the differing State, Federal and even local laws, it gets even more confusing!
While seemingly daunting, the answer to this question is relatively straight forward and is contained in the buildings Water Hygiene Management Plan. This plan defines the control measures that reduce the risk of conditions favorable to the growth of Legionella Bacteria and other water-borne pathogens in Building Water Systems, thereby reducing the risk to Building Occupants and surrounding communities.
How effective the control measures are at reducing the risk for the presence of Legionella in building water systems is confirmed and validated by the regular, routine testing for the presence of Legionella.
When should you test for Legionella?
A completed facility hazard Risk Assessment informs the Water Hygiene Management Plan, and the data collected helps design the control measures for each building water system. It also helps determine when and how many Legionella samples should be taken to validate control measure efficacy.
The number of Legionella samples to be taken is arrived at by considering the design and type of water systems and their equipment components, such as Hot Water Storage Tanks and Ice Machines. Sampling should also be representative of the flow of water around the building, especially for recirculating domestic hot water systems. Factors that help determine the frequency for testing include any existing or prior issues with water quality or building occupant illness, and the history and trends of past Legionella testing. For example, a building with a newly adopted Water Hygiene Management plan will have an increased testing frequency to establish a baseline of data.
How is Legionella Sampling done?
Once the frequency and location of Legionella sampling points has been determined, samples are taken following CDC guidelines for collection and sent to a Certified Laboratory. Proper Chain of Custody documentation should be included, and consideration given for expedited shipping. Given that samples are incubated at the Lab, results are typically turned around in 7-10 days.
Complementary Water Hygiene Webinar
To learn more, please join us for our complimentary Water Hygiene webinar, Wednesday, May 24th at 11 AM. The third of a three-part series on what building owners and operators need to know about Water Hygiene and the control of Legionella and other water borne pathogens in facility water systems to reduce risk to building occupants.
Part 1 – Water Management Plan – Creation & Implementation
Part 2 – Control Measures and Corrective Actions
Part 3 – Validation, Response Plans & Remediation
Part 3 – Validation, Response Plans & Remediation Webinar, register here
If you missed Parts 1 or 2, please fill out the contact us form here: https://www.metrogroupinc.com/contact-us/ and in the message section write “Send recordings from past water webinars.”
Metro Group has been the trusted source for building solutions since 1925. For a FREE consultation and to learn more visit: https://www.metrogroupinc.com/water-treatment/legionella-water-management/