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07 Oct 2022

The importance of Legionella Testing explained

What is Legionella?

 Legionella is a form of bacteria which proliferates in water. It can be found in ponds, rivers, and other natural water sources. When rainwater falls it is clean and clear, however the rainwater can become contaminated with leaves and debris on it’s journey to a rainwater harvesting tank. Where the stored water temperature is between 11 – 60 degrees Celsius, Legionella can grow rapidly and lead to outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease and other related infections.

However, a well-designed rainwater harvesting system will ensure that water is stored away from sunlight and below 11 degrees so, the likelihood of Legionella proliferating is very slim.

 Why is having a Legionella test important?

 Ensuring water supply is safe from Legionella is crucial for all businesses and individuals. In the UK, the control of Legionella falls within the General Requirements of the Health and Safety at work and the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002. Stormsaver can help to give you peace of mind by carrying out Legionella tests whilst on site maintaining your rainwater harvesting system.

 How is it tested?

Our engineers use a testing kit which is supplied by our partner ‘Hydrosense’. The kit uses Lateral Flow Immunochromatographic Assay (LFICA) technology and is designed to detect Legionella antibodies in water samples, which allows our engineer to receive almost immediate and accurate results on-site.  We can also post tests out to your site for you to carry out in between maintenance visits.

 How can the risk of Legionella be reduced in rainwater harvesting systems?

  • Organise regular maintenance visits where legionella testing is carried out (every 6 months) and have tests sent out to your site in between maintenance visits
  • Have optional extras added to your system such as a UV light to help sterilise the water before use
  • By investing in a good system design. Stormsaver’s products ensure water is not sitting for a long period of time, but is kept moving and that water is taken from the cleanest part of the tank.

 What are the benefits of having Stormsaver’s Legionella test?

  • Instant results
  • Recovery rate of 80% compared to lab testing at 64%
  • Easy to use: test yourself between maintenance visits
  • Can prevent future outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease
  • Meets health and safety requirements
  • Peace of mind, protection for your staff and customers

 What will happen if I don’t get a Legionella test?

 In the recent years, there has been an increase in cases of Legionnaires disease worldwide. Scientists predict that the effects of climate change (increased temperatures and rainfalls) could be to blame and that this is likely to continue rising. Our engineers have also recently identified several different sites, all with positive Legionella tests, which we were able to quickly raise awareness of to our clients so that action could be taken.

 Not doing your bit to reduce the risk could lead to heavy fines for you or your organisation and in serious cases, imprisonment of manslaughter.

Therefore, it is important to get your Legionella test booked in today. At Stormsaver, we maintain both Stormsaver and Non- Stormsaver systems so be sure to contact our friendly maintenance team here… Get in touch | Stormsaver Rainwater Harvesting

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