Legionella, the causative agent of Legionnaires' disease

The Legionella bacteria, a bacterium that defies any industry that comes into contact with water. You can find Legionella in the industry as well as in the shipping industry and in your home. This bacterium is mainly found in the following systems: Boilers, pipes, cooling towers, Swimming pools, etc… It is this bacteria that can cause Legionnaires’ disease, and pose a great risk to human health when it spreads.

The feeding factors behind the Legionella bacteria. The feeding factors behind the Legionella bacteria.

There are several factors that can promote the growth of Legionella bacteria. For example, the following can all be causes for the bacteria: Waterline breaks, scale and sediment, water temperature, PH fluctuations, and water stagnation.

In addition, it is the biofilm in pipes and water systems that allows these bacteria to settle and cause problems. Also, this biofilm provides protection for Legionella from heat and disinfectant.

What about human health? What about human health?

When you start working with water, constant monitoring is needed to ensure that Legionella bacteria cannot form. The thing is, Legionella has to grow before it causes a health risk. Once this bacteria has been able to grow, it needs a way to spread.

Thus, people can become infected by inhaling the Legionella bacteria through water droplets, or when it enters the lungs during drinking. In addition, there is no vaccine on the market today to prevent this infection.

Prevention is avoidance? Prevention is avoidance?

Since the Legionella bacteria cannot be seen with the naked eye, it is not easy to avoid them. It is recommended that the water safety plan be updated on a regular basis. Are you returning to your home after a long absence? Then it is always recommended to do flushing so that all water systems become free of this bacterium.

Moreover, as a company, it is quite a job to report Legionella to the authorities. As the owner, you must first carry out a risk analysis, and on the basis of this analysis you must draw up a management plan containing measures that you must follow as a company. Then you will have to keep these measures in a logbook and carry out checks at least twice a year. This takes a lot of time, and it also creates a huge health risk for both staff and customers.

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