HSE Inspectors to visit sites with cooling towers in West of Scotland…
The HSE is set to conduct inspections of businesses and organisations in the west of Scotland in an effort to manage the risk associated with legionella poisoning.
Inspectors plan to visit various sites that have cooling towers and evaporative condensers in Glasgow and the regions of Inverclyde, North Ayrshire and Renfrewshire. It is also expected that the information gained from these inspections will be used when further inspections are carried out across the UK.
In July the HSE published a report that warned about the dangers and increased risk if legionella outbreak at sites that had cooling towers and these inspections form part of the larger initiative to control this risk.
A review by the HSE of legionella outbreaks in 2011 found that cooling towers and evaporative condensers were responsible for the vast majority of these incidents in the UK during the last 10 years.
HSE Director for Scotland & Northern England, David Snowball explained the rationale behind the initiative:
“We are doing these visits to focus businesses’ attention on ensuring they are doing what is required both to protect their workers and the wider public.
“Our research has confirmed that cooling towers pose the biggest legionella risk. If we, or local authority inspectors, find that the appropriate controls are not in place, we will take enforcement action.
“Inspections are a valuable part of our regulatory action. They are however no substitute for companies meeting their legal duties on a daily basis, given that legionella levels can increase to high levels in a matter of days or weeks.”
HSE and local authorities will also be working with companies and relevant organisations to provide advice and encourage the sharing of effective ways of working to minimise risk.
Author: Julian Roberts
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