Prevention of legionellosis in industrial facilities from water analysis

  1. Legionella
  2. Major outbreaks of legionella infection
  3. The importance of preventive measures against legionella



It is a bacteria present in surface waters such as rivers, lakes and ponds. Since these natural reservoirs bacteria happens to colonize supply systems of cities, and through the distribution network water is incorporated into healthcare systems water (cold or hot) or others that require water to operate and can generating aerosols.

These are usually facilities that sometimes favor water stagnation and accumulation of products that nourish these bacteria, such as sludges, organic material, corrosion material and amoebas, forming a biolayer newly.

At certain temperatures, this biofilm favors the multiplication of legionella turning it into a source of infection for humans. Especially if a producer mechanism reaches aerosol, where bacteria can spread and for people to become ill when inhaled with contaminated aerosol.


Major outbreaks of legionella infection

Facilities identified as a source of infection most common forms are:

  • Systems hot water: mains and tanks, accumulators, boilers, heaters,
  • Domestic cold water systems: mains and tanks, accumulators, tanks, cisterns, tanks, wells …
  • Cooling towers
  • evaporative condensers
  • Air conditioning ducts
  • Respiratory therapy as respirators and nebulisers
  • humidifiers
  • heated pools, with or without movement
  • thermal baths
  • Decorative fountains
  • Irrigation systems
  • firefighting equipment
  • Cooling elements outdoor aerosolization
  • Other devices that can collect water and aerosolizarla


The importance of prevention and control of legionella in industrial installations

Measures to prevent legionella focus on avoiding conditions favoring colonization, proliferation and dispersed, such as temperature, water stagnation and accumulation of substrates.

In April 2017, the CTN 100 AENOR UNE 100030 updated on the criteria to be considered for the prevention and control of bacteria legionella at certain facilities and equipment located in buildings, to avoid the risk of legionella infection; a disease that can be fatal.

These criteria are focused on proper maintenance of the elements of each installation, eliminating and reducing the dirty areas that can serve as food for bacteria by water treatment. A daily tasks installation according to control levels of free chlorine, pH, turbidity, conductivity, and biocide in a representative number of installation points.

In this regard and in order to provide antimicrobial protection, Matelco has portable chlorine analyzers continuously measuring free chlorine, combined chlorine and total chlorine and turbidity analyzers, conductivity … .garantizando the required level by regulations.

Because health is first.

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