Covid 19 illustration
28 April 2020

Advice on how to open buildings again following COVID shutdown


Water systems have never faced such a testing time. Across the country, pipe work systems, tanks, drinks machines, showers and other system assets have been left stagnant and without effective control regimes. It is inevitable that many of these systems will have allowed bacteria such as Legionella and Pseudomonas to proliferate and therefore the risks to system users is now significantly higher.

The LCA have this week stated “Simply reopening a building that has stood idle, without addressing the safety of its water system is unacceptable. If Dutyholders are not able to put in place a proper recommissioning process to use the water system safely, they should not reopen the building. In addition to legionella risk, drinking water retained within buildings may no longer be potable following a period of prolonged stagnation.”

There are essential actions you will need to take, but with so many things on your to do list to manage the risks of COVID-19, I thought it would be helpful to summarise some of these and offer our advice and assistance, as we remain operational during this time:

  • It is essential that when you re-open, that any water system is not simply put straight back into use.
  • Where a water system has not been properly used for a period of greater than 30 days or there are reasonable concerns over a system’s hygienic quality, a full system flush and/or disinfection should be carried out before use as per PD855468.
  • For systems that haven’t been properly monitored during this time, carry out corroborative sampling of the system to confirm whether the system is safe for use.
  • Use June to catch up on any missed scheduled compliance tasks such as shower descales and TMV servicing, to avoid system non-compliances.
  • For clients who have been managing their water systems during this time, continue with your control schemes, however you may want to consider conducting corroborative sampling to ensure that any reduction in water use has not adversely affected your systems.
  • Use any remaining downtime to address longstanding remedial actions, that have been difficult to complete when buildings have been operational.
  • Document all actions in your log books and update Legionella risk assessments and control schemes where required.


For more information please call our customer service team on 01827 288 810 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., who will help you make the most sensible decisions for you and your business.

Stay safe.

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