Legionella in Rental Market Properties

Did you know that private landlords have a responsibility to ensure the water in their rental property is safe?

Section 3(2) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA) require landlords to ensure that their tenants are not exposed to health and safety risks and the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH). There is also a framework of actions to control the risk from a range of hazardous substances, including biological agents.

What must I do as a landlord?

  • Ensure all tenants are fully protected from the risks of Legionella bacteria
  • Set regular Legionella risk assessment with an expert
  • Introduce necessary measures that reduce the risk posed by Legionella to their tenants

Which Factors Increase the Risk of Legionella Bacteria Growth?

A water system in any building can become contaminated with Legionella bacteria when any of the following happens;

  • Water temperature is between 20-45°C.
  • Water is contaminated with articles such as rust and scale, which can provide nutrients to help Legionella bacteria thrive.
  • Water droplets, spray, or mist is dispersed into the air.
  • Water is allowed to stagnate, including being stored or re-circulated through the system before being used.

What to Include in a Legionella Risk Assessment?

Landlords should ensure they contract a fully qualified contractor to complete the Legionella Risk Assessment report.

  1. The name and complete job title of the Legionella Risk Assessor
  2. All significant findings from the Legionella risk assessment, including any Legionella risks that have been identified
  3. Control measures that been identified.
  4. Any measures which need to be implemented, with a date
  5. A note of the condition of the water systems which have been tested