New York City takes the quality of its water seriously, and commercial buildings have a much greater burden of compliance than residential homes do. If you own or manage a facility in New York City, it is important that you always keep an eye on your water system and have a legionella prevention plan, which can proliferate and cause a deadly outbreak if you are not vigilant.
Steps For Your Legionella Prevention Plan In NYC
The good news is that by following a few basic principles, you can dramatically improve your success in warding off this potentially dangerous bacteria. Have you completed all your requirements for annual certification of your cooling towers and water system?
Create A Water Management Plan Based In Your Unique Needs
The first step in complying with New York City’s Legionella prevention regulations is to create a water management plan. Keeping Legionella at bay is not as simple as just occasionally adding some chlorine to your water; you will need to develop a robust and thorough plan of action that spans your entire system across multiple testing points and methods.
A professional can help you to do this by providing a personalized strategy; cookie cutter options that work for one building may not work for the next because the composition of the water you use, the shape and condition of your water system and a variety of other factors can all play a role in whether Legionella can flourish.
You will need to consider everything from the temperature of your water to the chemicals you use (if any), filtration options and the removal of stagnant water and dead legs where possible. This can seem overwhelming to tackle on your own, which is why many commercial buildings in New York City rely on the pros to manage this for them.
Validate Your Plan Consistently
The next step toward preventing Legionella in your facility is to regularly put your plan to the test. It is not sufficient to simply create a plan, then continue following it without testing or validation. Otherwise, you will have no insight into whether your current plan is working and whether new issues have developed.
The best way to validate your water management plan is to regularly test your water for Legionella directly across multiple points in your system, preferably with water that has been allowed to sit at the point of collection for some time. Thus, testing is a great thing to tackle as your first task of the day. New York City also requires regular water testing in order to remain in compliance, so you can tackle multiple projects in one go.
Establish Relationships With Professionals Ahead Of Time
Sometimes, especially when you are in the early stages of developing a water treatment plan for Legionella, the bacteria will begin to appear anyway. This is why it is vital that you establish a relationship based upon trust with a Legionella prevention and testing company ahead of time.
Once Legionella has appeared in your water, you must act immediately, and needing to find a trustworthy company at that point takes time and can leave you in a pinch. Finding a company you work well with not only prepares you for a potential outbreak but also provides a resource that can guide you toward a more comprehensive water plan for your building.
Be Sure To Submit Documentation For Compliance
New York City maintains fairly stringent documentation requirements for Legionella control, including submitting your regular testing results (which occur anywhere from once per week to once per month), registering any cooling towers, disinfecting and cleaning your machinery regularly and reporting Legionella as soon as it appears.
Your Legionella prevention plan should document important points of contact and a schedule for submitting these vital documents so that you can remain in compliance with New York City’s (and state’s) regulations. Failure to adequately comply can result in fines and other penalties with only a very short time (sometimes even the same day!) to fix them.
Work With The Professional For Your Legionella Prevention Plan
You may be trying to craft a water treatment or Legionella prevention plan for the first time, or you may simply be looking to make your current strategy robust or double-check your compliance with New York’s laws. No matter your motivation, the professionals at Tower Water would be happy to help you accomplish your goals.
Reach out to schedule an appointment to discuss the challenges you are facing in your water system. The experts will provide personalized guidance and a customized water treatment plan that tackles the specific weaknesses and risks that your facility faces so that you have the best chance of success against dangerous bacteria.