When Legionella Remediation is a Waste of Money

Let’s imagine that your facility’s water has tested positive for Legionella. This is serious. Legionella bacteria can cause Legionnaires’ Disease, a dangerous condition that can lead to hospitalization and death. 
You immediately contact a Legionella control specialist and ask for Legionella remediation, an immediate fix. After a week, your Legionella tests are negative – there are no Legionella bacteria detected.
The remediation cost several thousand dollars, but was well worth the money, right? You think to yourself, “Phew, we’re done. No further action is needed. I can rest easy.”
Unfortunately, that’s not true, for three reasons:
  1. Legionella bacteria are naturally occurring, which is to say they are part of the environment around us. If Legionella found their way into your facility once, they almost surely will again.
  2. Many remediation techniques are subject to a “Legionella rebound.” That is to say, at the end of remediation, your Legionella tests show no measurable presence of the bacteria. However, if you test a week or more later, you may find that Legionella is not only once again present, but at an even higher level than before.
  3. Your legal liability is now higher than ever before you were aware of a Legionella problem and then you stopped after simple remediation.
In other words, your Legionella remediation was a waste of money. Sure, you solved a problem for a few days, but now you have created a much larger problem. Unless you’re going to continue to control Legionella long-term, your remediation was just money down the drain.

So what is the proper approach that protects your facility, your visitors, and your liability?
  1. Certainly, immediate remediation is important. However, it’s “step one,” not “I’m done.” Moreover, it’s important to understand that some remediation approaches are deeply flawed and are almost certain to lead to a rebound with higher levels of Legionella. As a truly independent Legionella consultant that is not tied to a particular product, chemical, or approach, we are happy to answer your questions about that
  2. At a minimum, your facility also needs a water management program that includes ongoing monitoring and plans of action in case Legionella is once again present. A water management plan is not only affordable but simply having a plan can immediately reduce your liability to something closer to $100,000 instead of $1 million per case.
The proper remediation approach – one that is best for your situation rather than the “one size fits all” approach taken by many companies – combined with a water management plan that is actively followed, will ensure that your remediation wasn’t a waste of money. Contact our Legionella experts at Nancrede Engineering, and we’ll help you find the most cost-effective approach that works both today and in the future. You can reach us at info@nancrede.com or 24 hours per day at 317-943-6644.
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