In a wide variety of different organisations, water risk assessments play an integral part in making sure that environments are safe for people to spend time in.
From offices and schools to care homes and hospitals, organisations have a legal requirement to provide employees and other visitors with a safe environment to conduct day-to-day activities.
While it’s essential to carry out water risk assessments in the first place, they’re an ongoing requirement in most cases and will require additional attention as time goes on, especially with recent reports of water contamination.
Let’s look at what’s involved in a water risk assessment review to provide the best water supply to your end users.
What is a water risk assessment?
Water risk assessments are carried out to monitor the safety of the conditions surrounding water distribution throughout a property. They tend to involve monitoring various different factors, such as temperature and water flow, and then using that data to make suggestions on how to keep the water source safe for human consumption.
Specific hazards that could be considered might include the bacteria Legionella pneumophila, which can lead to the eponymous atypical pneumonia that’s frequently called Legionnaires’ disease.
Water risk assessments are generally required to be carried out by professional water hygiene companies such as the Water Hygiene Centre. Non-experts tend to lack both the professional insight and the technical expertise and equipment necessary to carry out risk assessments in an effective manner. The failures resulting from these inadequacies can in turn result in unsafe management which can lead to ill health and even death.
How do water risk assessments need to be reviewed?
Up until 2013, Health and Safety Executive (HSE) mandated that water risk assessments had to be carried out at two-year intervals. In 2013, that interval was dropped, with the introduction of a different set of criteria that should be considered instead.
As most environments are subject to constant change, it’s highly likely that the conditions present during that initial water risk assessment would be altered, potentially significantly, during the review. In a document published in 2014, HSE provided a specific set of criteria that can help guide property managers in deciding when they should carry out water risk assessments, based on changing material conditions.
What happens during a water risk assessment review?
In case your organisation is required to participate in water risk assessments regularly, it’s best to remain up to date with the latest UK government policies and follow recommendations and guidelines to ensure the safety of everyone engaged with the organisation.