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Clearwater Services UK work with clients across a broad range of sectors and here are a small selection of the case studies we have experienced. They demonstrate the importance of having the correct assessments and maintenance in place:

Healthcare Sector

Our client is a nursing home based in the North East of England with about 45 residents. They are very conscious of the need to provide a clean and healthy environment as their residents are elderly and at risk of infection. To this end, they have modernised their water and heating systems. Clearwater provided a risk assessment in October 2012 and overall the client was taking precautions against the potential threat of legionella. However, there were the following recommendations that came from the risk assessment:

  • There are areas of pipework that do require lagging to prevent the inadvertent heating of nearby cold water piping
  • The cylinder (calorifier) requires a secondary return valve to be fitted
  • Shower maintenance needs to be implemented and all shower heads should be stripped and cleaned thoroughly every 3 months
  • A maintenance schedule should be implemented for all thermostatic mixing valves to ensure they are working correctly

As a risk assessment, this client was actually at the higher end of properly managing the risks of legionella and whilst the shower maintenance needed urgent attention, the other items were deemed medium to low risk

Leisure Sector

Our client is a public house in East Cleveland. The landlord is a sitting tenant and the brewery actually owns the building. There was little thought about managing legionella and it was clear no risk assessment had taken place in the last couple of years – possibly longer. The recommendations that came from the risk assessment highlight the real dangers of not managing legionella, and the 'responsible person' was clearly putting themselves at real risk of prosecution from any outbreak:

  • There was no lagging anywhere in the system, and certain sections required to be removed and re-piped
  • Hot water pipes were running alongside cold water pipes, transferring heat to the cold water and providing dangerous conditions for the build up of legionella
  • There were ‘dead legs’ and redundant pipework that needs to be capped or removed
  • The cold water tank was lined with a film of slime and mould – this required a full draining and cleaning
  • The tank lid underside was clearly covered with mould, and was wooden. It was ill fitting and rotting – a new lid needed to be acquired
  • The cylinder (calorifier) needed a shunt pump or circulation pump to ensure consistent temperatures throughout
  • Shower maintenance needs to be implemented and all shower heads should be stripped and cleaned thoroughly every 3 months
  • Some taps were extremely scaled and require a deep cleanse or replacement
This risk assessment highlighted some serious problems, and the resulting scoring of the assessment highlighted ‘high risk’ from legionella.