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COVID-19 Closures: Could Make Water Unsafe in Offices, Schools

In just a couple of weeks, many office buildings, hotels, malls, schools, gyms and other commercial buildings will open for the first time in over a month.  Purdue University’s Center for Plumbing Safety states; “Several serious building drinking water safety risks exist.  As people begin using the water again, they will encounter extremely stagnated water with excessive lead, copper, and bacterial concentrations, that may include harmful organisms like legionella that can cause disease outbreaks.”

​Additionally, many, many people will be occupying these buildings whether they are shopping, working, studying, or just passing through, without assurances that they don’t carry COVID-19. OnSite Legionella Testing has 4 simple steps to follow before reopening buildings:

  1. Start well before opening your doors.
    a. Flush all water-use outlets; faucets, toilets, showers heads, hose bibs, etc… with hot water above 120 degrees for 3 minutes (start timer after water gets hot, check your water heater for temp). In the absence of hot water, flush for 10 minutes with cold water. 
  2. Chemically treat all water features, pools and spas to kill existing bacteria. 
  3. Service your Cooling Towers prior to building occupation. 
    Perform routine flushing, chemical testing, and inspection. Ask OSLT for help if needed.
  4. Perform Legionella testing throughout your Facility—Count all water use outlets and input the number into the OSLT calculator to determine how many tests are needed. Testing in one location does not give you an accurate reading on building-wide Legionella concentration.  Water needs to be tested throughout the building. Request guidance, test kits and training from OSLT.
  5. Sanitize, Sanitize, Sanitize—When buildings open, everything will need to be sanitized regularly for up to a year.  Especially healthcare, schools, buses and highly trafficked buildings such as shopping malls and stores. The CDC recommends a 60%-90% concentration of Ethanol Alcohol based sanitizer when disinfecting hands and surfaces. The Cleaning for Healthier Schools Handbook, adopted by schools nationwide, recommends the use of Ethanol based sanitizers in schools in the event of an infectious disease outbreak.  

OSLT can help you with your building safety concerns. Request your free Water Test Calculator to determine how many locations in the building are needed to perform Legionella testing. OSLT will provide you with all the Legionella Test Kits, Training and ongoing Water Management consulting.  Stock up on Simply Sanitizer (10% discount code PAUL10P). We can provide you with individual orders or enroll you in our Monthly Sanitizer Shipment program so you never run out.  Please contact Paul at [email protected] or go to: www.onsitelegionellatesting.com for all your Legionella Testing and Simply Sanitizer needs.