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Discuss legionnaires risk assessment in the Water Regulations area at

  1. merv

    merv Plumber GSR

    Hi, I have been approached by a letting agent today that I look after. They are saying it is now law that legionnaires risk assessments should be carried out on all rented properties.

    Has anybody heard of this because I haven't and if so, will it be a good idea for me to do a legionnaires course.

    Or is it just one big pain in the butt !!

    Your thoughts please!!
  2. Rickster123

    Rickster123 Guest

    Legionnaires seems to be the new asbestos. The council are bang on it at the moment. No dead legs on hot supplies etc.
  3. merv

    merv Plumber GSR

    When you do a risk assessment, how would you know if there were dead legs beneath the floor??? I'm thinking of doing the course as I've already got a list of 15 property's to do.
  4. Soulman

    Soulman GSR

    Not heard it myself, but that doesn't mean its not true.

    Quick scout of the old google brought this up:

    HSE -Legionnaires' disease - What you must do

    Which states landlords have an obligation to understand the risks involved.

    I also found this site, which gives you a downloadable template which, you could use to give you an idea of where to start.

    Practical Guidance And Template For Legionella Risk Assessment | GRL Landlord Association

    I dont think you need to get yourself booked onto a L8 course just to do a risk assessment. As long as you understand the basics, stored water temperatures, dead legs, disinfect shower heads etc.

    Hope thats of some help
  5. gasmanrob

    gasmanrob Plumber GSR

    There's been a few of these posts recently, and I've also been doing a lot of dead leg removals and setting temperatures of late so maybe there's some weight in it yet
  6. merv

    merv Plumber GSR

    The course is £280. Seems worth while as I can carry out the assessments whilst doing the gas safety checks.. More penny's in the bank!!
  7. Rickster123

    Rickster123 Guest

    Sounds like another training centre money making scheme
    • Like Like x 4
  8. Chris_Swansea

    Chris_Swansea New Member

    surely water regulations cover legionnaires, as we all know if you have water regs, hot above cold, no dead legs, cold water pipes below 25c law best practice 20c stored hot water above 60c as legionella will flourish between 25c to 50c, or is it like applumbing said another training centre money making scheme and more cards to carry in your wallet
    • Like Like x 2
  9. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    Peeps this is utter BS. There is NO specific and seperate requirement to carry out this assessment. If you care to checkout the HSE mythbusters pages you will find HSE say its nowt but a scam by letting agents to frighten landlords into parting with more dosh. The HSE post takes you off to old existing legislation which every landlord should be adhereing to anyway. This is the ongoing duty of care towards tenants.
    • Like Like x 3
  10. Roger Welton

    Roger Welton Plumber GSR

    Didn't a landlord get fined £20k or so the other year? I guess the agents are trying to defer any potential liability
  11. TFGplumbing

    TFGplumbing Plumber GSR

    You need to do a course to make sure you can check water temperatures... take my money now..

    Oh wait that's not how its going to play out
    • Like Like x 1
  12. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    The HSE post also states catagorically that they DO NOT accept any form of certificate regarding this inspection. Every landlord has an ongoing duty of care to their tenants so every case is judged on their individual merits. If, for example, you have a tenant in a multi bathroom accomodation but don't tell them to run each shower head for 20 mins once a month and legionella develops in one then its the landlords problem no matter what a cert says. If teh tenant ignores the advice then the tenant is in the clear. If a landlord won't pay for dead legs over, for example, 300mm to be removed and legionella develops then its their head on the block. ALL covered by EXISTING legislation.
    • Dislike Dislike x 1
  13. 1Steven

    1Steven Plumber GSR

    I do quite a bit of work in care homes. They all have to comply with risk assessments and schematic drawings and a full breakdown of temp checks shower descaling etc.
    You can download a copy of L8 on the hse website.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Leezygeezer

    Leezygeezer GSR

    My understanding is that if you are a landlord there is now a legal obligation to carry out a legionella risk assessment on those properties.

    However, you do not need to be a plumber, approved plumber or legionella qualified. Also anyone can download a blank risk assessment template via a Google search/download, performing a risk assessment does not mean that disinfection is required.
  15. Leezygeezer

    Leezygeezer GSR

    This is also different in commercial settings, schools, care homes, hospitals etc.
  16. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member


    There is no legal obligation to specifically carry out a legionella test. The nonsense banded around by estate and letting agents is designed purely to generate THEM income from mug landlords.

    There IS However, under exsiting legislation which has been in place for over 20 years, an obligation and duty of care from a landlords perspective to ensure there is no possibility of legionella developing. If, for example, there is more than one shower head, the landlord must issues instructions to ensure the tenent knows how often to run teh unused to make sure its safe.

    The legislation does not call for a plumber specifically you are correct. However, it calls for a competent person who is, much more importantly, someone who can assess an installation.

    The ability to assess an installation means understand what a building is likely to have installed, to be able to recognise that having one thing installed almost always means somethng else is hidden away for example. The simple fact of teh matter is that it would be a rare individual who had the ability and knowledge to do that without being soemhow heavily involved in plumbing or building services. This, I suspect, is what you meant by your second post.
    • Like Like x 1
  17. 1Steven

    1Steven Plumber GSR

  18. Leezygeezer

    Leezygeezer GSR

    Page45 of hsg274 is specific on the responsibility of landlords, it is non specific on how this should be applied in practice though.
  19. plumben

    plumben Plumber

    From my understanding a risk assessment must be carried out, anyone could do this and say there appears to be minimum risk at the time of the assessment although that doesn't mean there isn't a dead leg under the floor it just means everything looks visually fine and temps are ok, if you make your own template and fill it out for each property its more than likely worth as much as a bag of salt
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Paul Williams

    Paul Williams New Member

    You are partly right YorksireDave, there is a legal requirement for COMMERCIAL (i.e. non residential, like church, school warehouse, pub) property owners or the Corporate Tenant to have an L8 risk assessment done, this extends to VACANT residential properties IF they become a work place (when refurbishing for instance) and have stored water.

    I have worked as a Health and Safety advisor for several tradespeople, for nearly 10 years now, and would gladly help any of you to work out if a property has to have an assessment done for no charge and I might know a good assessor in the area.

    Please contact me directly for more advice.
    • Like Like x 2
  21. turnpin

    turnpin Trusted Plumber

    Welcome to the forums Paul and many thanks for your generous offer....regards Turnpin:)
    • Like Like x 1
  22. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    Thanks Paul and welcome.
    The BS I referred to was letting agents trying to scare landlords of non commercial businesses, i.e. letting in normal domestic situations, into expensive and unnecessary checks that are adequately covered under existing legislation. Basically creating fear, uncertainty and doubt in residential landlords.
    Your offer is both appreciated and noted so expect to get questioned ;)
  23. finchy01

    finchy01 Plumber GSR

    Here we go. Day 1, lesson 1. Basic I know but I'm covering my arse. What constitutes as a dead leg? A standard ov system with 1 bathroom and an ensuite. Potential dead legs are any outlets. As long as they are flushed through regularly (10 minutes every 7 days was what we used to do at a commercial property I worked at) and shower head disinfected every 6 months. Am I right in this or have I totally missed the point?
  24. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    So far as I understand, a dead leg is a length of pipe 3 or 5 times the diameter of the pipe. So, 15mm pipe anything over 45mm in length. 22mm pipe anything over 66mm in length.
    I'm sure it's actually very small in length, and can well understand why, but not sure of the exact multiplier. Would appreciate someone jumping in here :confused:
    If it can be flushed I'm quite sure its not considered a dead leg. As you say tho it must be flushed to remain safe.
  25. Chuck

    Chuck Active Member

    WRAS seems to allow a maximum length of twice the pipe diameter:

    WRAS Dead legs

    The water in such a dead leg will be stagnant under normal conditions but keeping it short is supposed to allow the contents get hot enough for thermal disinfection to occur.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  26. zzzjim

    zzzjim Well-Known Member

    Do we need to look out for abandoned kitchen's ?
    Piped up in saggy plastic !
    Black mouldy bits - Just my imagination !
    " Various plumbing materials have been evaluated for their ability to support the growth of Legionella (and other bacteria). Copper pipe is inhibitory, whereas plastic (PVC) pipe will support the attachment and subsequent growth of bacteria- including Legionell "
    . or is this just the copper industry (Doing like the Tobaco Industry )
  27. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    I was close ;-) Wrong but close...
  28. Chuck

    Chuck Active Member

    I think that this is one of those 'rules' that has tightened over the years. A decade or two ago the '6-d' rule, was common, these days the World Health Organisation recommends 1.5-d for potable water systems.

    My opinion is that best practice in 2017 is 'no dead legs' but it's not always feasible.

    It used to be common practice to install a vertical dead leg intended to trap air next to ball valves to prevent water hammer. (I say 'common' because I've seen it on several occasions but I don't actually know whether it was ever 'standard' thing to do.) Goodness knows what's inside one of them after it's been in situ for 50 years...
  29. finchy01

    finchy01 Plumber GSR

    So when carrying out a risk assessment are dead legs acceptable so long as they are noted and taken as an increased risk anf should be advised they are removed. Or is it comoulsary to remove any dead.legs that are found? Obviously without ripping the whole house apart one could never be sure to have found them all! What about disused washing machine/dishwasher feeds that are just iso valves off. They are everywhere!
  30. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Active Member

    Even worse, if a dead leg is defined as something of 1.5 pipe dia you can not install drain offs as its impossible to do them in less! What a bloody joke. Is it any wonder the cowboys get so much when those who care are hoist by their own petard. The regulatory world needs to wake up IMHO Rant over :cool:
  31. Leezygeezer

    Leezygeezer GSR

    One of the natural properties of copper is that it contains a biocide. Which is of course the enemy of biofilm. While it doesn't destroy all bacteria it inhibits proliferation of the water borne bacteria.
    • Agree Agree x 1