In this article we’ll cover two major areas of water legislation – the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999, and the legislation covering legionella control – and introduce the main responsibilities your business has for maintaining compliance.
These are an introduction to the main areas of responsibility businesses have, but are not exhaustive. Your business’s regulatory responsibilities will vary depending on a range of factors, so it’s important to get expert advice on what’s required to maintain compliance.
Legionella is a bacteria which occurs at low levels in natural water supplies, but which can multiply to dangerous levels within water systems. It’s the cause of Legionnaire’s disease, a potentially fatal form of pneumonia.
All businesses have a responsibility to assess and manage legionella risk under the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) and the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulation (1994). Requirements are set out in the Health and Safety Executive’s Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) L8, and businesses who fail to comply with these regulations could face prosecution.
The main areas of responsibility for your business are as follows:
Once a risk assessment has been completed, ongoing legionella risk management can be very straightforward as long as the right training, processes and measurement methods are put in place from the start. Often, simple measures are all that’s necessary to ensure your water supply is safe and hygienic.
The Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999 are in place to ensure that any new plumbing systems supplied from public mains are safe, efficient and high quality, reducing the risk of waste, contamination or other problems. While they’re mostly applicable to businesses who are installing new water systems or making modifications to existing systems, there are also some points that all businesses should be aware of.
The legislation covers several major areas:
The Water Supply regulations help to ensure that your water systems are installed and maintained to the highest standard. They also help to protect the public water mains, by preventing “backflow” from contaminated systems, and by reducing the risk of leaks. By adhering to the right standards when you make changes to your water system, you can also ensure that your systems run as efficiently as possible, saving your business money.
While water regulation can be quite complex in places, maintaining compliance doesn’t have to be difficult. With the right advice and a strong strategy, your business could have the confidence that it’s fully compliant with all applicable legislation with a minimum of effort.
Total Water Solutions can provide expert support to identify your business’s areas of responsibility, and help you create efficient, straightforward processes for staying compliant, contact us to find out more.