Control and savings for Legionella and asbestos
We currently work for a professional association operating out of a very large, iconic listed building in a major city. The property is well used by members of the association and the general public. Managing compliance is a challenge for them due to many years of under investment. Assurity Consulting have been supporting the FM team with professional advice for several years, helping to maintain compliance within these limitations. The FM team were conscious of protecting the users of the property and also protecting the reputational risk to the organisation through non-compliance. Working together, we identified two main compliance risks that needed specific attention, Legionella and asbestos management control.
Legionella management control
Originally installed in the 1930s, through regular refurbishments the water services have been replaced. However there were many runs of pipework with insufficient record keeping to log the changes. There were many dead legs in the system. Independent water quality tests also intermittently showed the presence of detectable Legionella bacteria. A full reassessment of the risk of Legionella highlighted that action was required to bring back control. As part of the new Legionella risk assessment, Assurity Consulting provided a schematic diagram of the system indicating the location of the problems. A programme was put in place by the FM team to address these problems. Dead legs were removed and a process was put in place to record all future changes to the water services to stop these problems reoccurring. Water quality checks since these changes have proved negative for Legionella detections. The FM team estimate that between £15k and £20k has been saved on annual operating costs through:
- removing the need to regularly chlorinate systems;
- reduced heating costs on domestic hot water and;
- reduced water usage costs by removing the need to flush infrequently used outlets.
Control of asbestos
At the time of construction of their building, asbestos was seen as the “magic mineral” so was heavily used throughout the property. Whilst surveys and removal of asbestos had been instigated, the FM team, with advice from Assurity Consulting, identified that a programme of condition assessments was required. This programme provided the reassurance that the remaining asbestos was in good condition and not presenting any risk to users of the building. Annual inspections are now recorded and provide better evidence of management control. Savings of up to £200k have been realised by leaving the asbestos in place and regularly assessing its condition, rather than paying for unnecessary removal.
The Legionella and the asbestos controls are all incorporated into the Assurity Plus workplace compliance solution. This gives them easy to access concise real time management information, giving them practical evidence of their compliance, providing the peace of mind that they are in control.
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