Legionella Bacteria Control

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Earlier today I spoke with Dave Adsalon regarding HSE's consultative document (draft legislation) ACOP L8.

Briefly my letting Agent has circulated all landlords saying that new HSE legislation is already in force requiring every landlord to have risk assessments carried out annually for Legionella Bacteria in the hot water systems. Dave said the document is a consultation and therefore is not law currently. In other words my agent had "jumped the gun".

On Dave's advice I have scanned through the document and have observed the following:-

1) The consultation ends in August but will be implemented (with possible changes reflecting consultee's repsonses) by December 31st 2013.

2) Whilst almost exclusively referring to "Employers" and "Places of work" there are several worrying references to "Landlords who are in control of premises" being responsible for the risk assessment any implementation thereafter.

3) There are also references to domestic hot water systems requiring a simpler form of risk assessment.

This leads me to believe that all private landlords are likely to be required to have risk assessments carried out should the legislation survive in its existing form. The onus will then be on landlords to monitor the systems and carry out future checks on a regular basis - no specific time frame is given.

I believe, if I am reading the situation correctly, that our association should look into this legislation as a matter of urgency and establish:-
A) Whether or not the document affects private landlords letting single units.
B) If so then the RLA should quickly lobby the HSE before the window for consultation closes next month objecting to the proposal.
C) If so then the RLA should consult experts in the field and obtain competitive quotes for the risk assessments and any water analysis required. I haver been quoted 150 plus vat for the first inspection and 120 plus vat for subsequent yearly inspections.

Any landlord with a portfolio of properties should be very worried about this impending legislation!!!





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18/07/2013 13:27

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