In potable and non-potable water systems Legionella is a common bacteria. The liability for attempting to control and test for Legionella rests on the building owner. With Legionella testing, treatment, and water management plans, the risk is significantly reduced.
The last several years have brought about some profound changes to the issues facing facility managers and directors. Among them is managing risk associated with proper cooling tower care and the potential for Legionnaires Disease. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports confirm that the frequency of cases continues to rise each year and the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and other regulatory agencies have made it clear that many water systems within facilities should be taking a proactive approach to managing this risk.
In response to an industry-wide plea for standard measures for Legionella control, the Association of Water Technologies (AWT) recently issued guidance. AWT is widely regarded as the water treatment industry’s primary resource for credible and effective guidelines. We feel that it is important to communicate their guidance to you. Click the button/link below to download the Association of Water Technologies’ Position Statement & Guidance Document on Legionella.
It’s clear that every cooling tower system is different in design, risk for contamination and exposure to human life. Accordingly, Chardon establishes programs with the flexibility to meet the diverse needs of the facilities while recommending the practices outlined in AWT’s guidelines. In addition to our long-standing approaches to service, optimization, and scale and corrosion management, the guidance from AWT addresses biological control and documentation up to the level deemed necessary to control Legionella growth within your cooling tower system. It provides testing and remediation procedures as well as guidance on maintenance practices needed to meet the standard.
Additional Legionella Information
Below is our curated list of external resources that offer more information on Legionella. If you are not currently a Chardon Labs customer and would like to talk to a Chardon representative about our treatment services and our water management plans offerings, please give us a call or fill out our contact form and a representative will be in touch.
It’s clear that every cooling tower system is different in design, risk for contamination and exposure to human life. Accordingly, Chardon establishes programs with the flexibility to meet the diverse needs of the facilities while recommending the practices outlined in AWT’s guidelines.
In addition to our long-standing approaches to service, optimization, and scale and corrosion management, the guidance from AWT addresses biological control and documentation up to the level deemed necessary to control Legionella growth within your cooling tower system. It provides testing and remediation procedures as well as guidance on maintenance practices needed to meet the standard.
Laws on Legionella
- New York State Department of Health regulations for Legionella in cooling towers and potable water in healthcare facilities.
- New York City government website; Chapter 8 (Cooling Towers) of Title 24 of the Rules of the City of New York.
- HSE (Health Safety Executive), U.K. website that provides practical advice and guidance to control the risks from exposure to Legionella in manmade water systems and the U.K. requirements (duties) under regulation.
- Government of Canada website; “Legionella in heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems”. Part II, Division III titled “HVAC Systems,” which contains requirements regarding HVAC systems, such as standards, records, operation, inspection, cleaning, testing, maintenance, and investigations.
Guidelines on Legionella
- ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Inc.) website. ASHRAE Standard 188-2015, “Legionellosis: Risk Management for Building Water Systems” and latest position and guideline papers on Legionellosis.
- AWT (Association of Water Technologies) website; information about water treatment and Legionella.
- CDC (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) website; links to over 2,500 results for Legionella, including the latest revision of the Model Aquatic Health Code.
- CTI (Cooling Technology Institute) website, formerly the Cooling Tower Institute; download the latest position papers on Legionella.
- OHSA website; search and get OSHA Legionnaires’ disease information, including the latest manual (Section III, Chapter 22 Legionella 2019: A Position Statement and Guidance Document 7) on Legionnaires’ disease.
Healthcare Guidelines on Legionella
- CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) website and the “Requirement to Reduce Legionella Risk in Healthcare Facility Water Systems to Prevent Cases and Outbreaks of Legionnaires’ Disease.”
- Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene “Report of the Maryland Scientific Working Group to Study Legionella in Water Systems in Healthcare Institutions” (June 14, 2000)
- Department of Veterans Affairs (Veterans Health Administration) website; see VHA Directive 1061.2014: Prevention of healthcare-associated Legionella disease and scald injury from potable water distribution systems.
- AIHA (American Industrial Hygiene Association) website; download the 2015 guideline on Legionella titled, “Recognition, Evaluation, and Control of Legionella in Building Water Systems.”
Additional Resources on Legionella
- U.S. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) website; the latest Legionella (Ground Water and Drinking Water) information 2016 publication: "Technologies for Legionella Control in Premise Plumbing Systems: Scientific Literature Review."
- PMC (PubMed Central) free full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine (NIH/NLM). Journal of Public Health Management and Practice article, “Legionellosis on the Rise: A Review of Guidelines for Prevention in the United States.” (2015)
- WHO (World Health Organization) website; download the 2007 publication “Legionella and the prevention of legionellosis” as well as any updates and current information (“Key Facts”) on the subject matter.
How We Can Help
We are a commercial water treatment and chemical supplier that offers services in 13 different states throught the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest. We specialize in treating boiler systems, cooling towers and closed-loop systems in a variety of industries.
If you have additional questions or would like to speak to us about how we can assist in your Legionella concerns, please give us a call or fill out our contact form and a representative will be in touch.
Matt Welsh is the Vice President and Water Consultant at Chardon Labs. He helps consult a wide range of customers utilizing various methods of water treatment, from chemical to chemical-free approaches, large and small applications, and across a wide range of geographical influences. With 20 years of water treatment experience, including a wide range of troubleshooting and service in potable water and non-potable HVAC and industrial applications, he is an expert in water treatment chemistry for cooling towers, boilers, and closed-loop systems.