The Office of the Inspector General has put out a memorandum that PBS must take immediate action to address the risk of Legionella contamination in water systems across GSA-controlled (owned and leased) buildings.
They state that since July 11, 2023, elevated levels of Legionella bacteria (Legionella)—the primary cause of Legionnaires’ disease—was detected in water at six GSA-controlled buildings located across four different GSA regions. The current reduced building occupancy levels can lead to water stagnation, which provides ideal conditions for the growth and spread of Legionella and increases the likelihood that other buildings may be contaminated.
Legionella Bacteria can be found in small amounts in natural freshwater. However, if they grow and multiply in human-made water systems, they can become a health concern. Legionella can cause severe lung infections called Legionnaire’s disease. It is crucial to implement preventive measures against Legionella contamination in buildings to protect the health of occupants. Here’s a step-by-step guide to implementing effective Legionella contamination control:
The first step is to evaluate your building’s water systems to determine if they are at an increased risk for Legionella growth. Factors that increase the risk include:
A comprehensive water management program is essential for preventing and controlling Legionella contamination. The program should include:
Control measures aim to reduce Legionella growth and spread in the water system. Common control measures include:
Regular monitoring and evaluation are crucial for ensuring the effectiveness of your Legionella contamination control program. This includes:
Staff training and education are essential for ensuring that everyone involved in building maintenance understands the risks of Legionella contamination and how to implement proper control measures. This includes training on:
By implementing these steps, you can effectively prevent Legionella contamination in your buildings and protect the health of your occupants. ChemREADY is here to help you implement these steps. Contact us today if you require assistance with your facility.