Flushing Infrequently Used Outlets
Posted on 28th February 2023
Duty holders are responsible for preventing and controlling the risk of exposure to Legionella bacteria, which can lead to the potentially fatal Legionnaires’ disease.
HSG274 Part 2 tells us: 2.4 Within hot and cold water systems, the risk areas that support the growth of microorganisms, including legionella, are controllable with good design, operation, maintenance and water system management and include where optimum temperatures for microbial growth and stagnation occur, eg dead legs, capped pipes (dead ends), infrequently used outlets.
What do we mean by infrequently used outlets?
Removing an infrequently used outlet is desirable but if this is not possible, implementing a good flushing regime will help to reduce the risks. Infrequently used outlets could be anything from an outside tap that is rarely used to an emergency eye wash station. It could also be a shower room used only for storage or an accessible WC that is only required occasionally.
Weekly flushing is a good way of minimising bacterial issues and will effectively kick-start a closed water system that's been redundant for a while. Turn on each tap and water outlet and leave them to run for at least five minutes. The running water passing through its infrastructure will disturb and disrupt the presence of biofilms. Be careful not to splash any water as the risk of legionella in these outlets is a lot higher.
Don't forget water temperatures, as these are equally as important when carrying out your flushing routine.
Any showers in the building should be turned up as hot as the settings allow and should reach a temperature no lower than 50 degrees Celsius after 1 minute's flow; conversely cold water should attain a maximum of 20 degrees Celsius (or below) after 2 minutes running.
You should keep records of any risk assessments and precautionary measures you take to prevent Legionella.
GES Water have fully trained and competent water safety experts to carry out these assessments for you, offering you peace of mind and clarity. It is also possible for someone at any business to become fully trained and competent in conducting these risk assessments themselves and we offer a Legionella Awareness Training Course and a Landlord Legionella Risk Assessment Pack to help too. See our shop for more details.
You can contact us today here to discuss the risk assessment your business may need and how often you may need one. With our expert assistance and advice, you can be sure your business will be safe and stay within the confines of the law.
Tagged as: Aylesbury, bacteria, Bucks, DutyHolders, Flushing, FlushingUnit, GES Water, Health & Safety, Legionella, legionellaawareness, temperature
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