HSE publishes important guidance about legionella risks during the Covid-19 outbreak

12 Jun 2020

If your business premises have been closed, or less people have been in during the Covid-19 outbreak, there is an increased risk of stagnant water in water and air conditioning systems due to lack of use. This in turn increases the risk of Legionnaire’s disease which is a potentially very serious lung infection.

Employers have a duty under health and safety law to protect their staff and others from the risks of Legionnaire’s disease.

The HSE has published guidance on ‘Legionella risks during the coronavirus outbreak’.

What can employers do to manage the risks of Legionella?

Employers should review their risk assessments and ensure they have in place appropriate measures to manage the risks from legionella before they:

  1. Reinstate or start using a water system again
  2. Restart some types of air conditioning units

If water or air conditioning units have been in regular use during the outbreak, then employers need to maintain any appropriate measures already in place to manage Legionella risks.

The full HSE guidance for Legionella risks during the coronavirus outbreak can be found here.

How can Trethowans help?

If you need assistance with understanding your legal obligations under health and safety law, then please get in touch with us on 0800 2800 421 or contact us here and we will be delighted to help.


Sarah Wheadon