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Legionnaires’ disease – tackling the risk

14 August 2013

Help is on hand for hotels, spas and restaurants serious about tackling the risk of Legonnaires’ disease.

TM Electronics has developed the TC Wall Port: a new low-cost wall accessory working with discrete sensors to monitor boxed-in TMV’s, concealed pipes and covered water tanks up to 20 meters away. A perfect solution for convenient and cosmetic water temperature monitoring.

What is Legionnaires’ disease? A potentially fatal disease caused by the legionella bacterium, which may be present in tepid water and is spread by inhalation of fine water droplets or spray.

What are the health and safety regulations? The HSE’s code of practise L8, requires all businesses to implement a full legionella risk assessment, and to maintain an effective water temperature testing regime.

What is an effective testing regime? Water outlets must be monitored throughout a building – typically once a month – to ensure safe water temperatures.

What is a safe water temperature?  Hot water in a building should be stored above 60°C and distributed above 50°C, and cold water distributed below 20°C.

What is the risk for hotels, spas and restaurants? A Philadelphia hotel was the location of the first reported outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in 1976. A Barrow local authority arts centre was the source of one of the worst UK outbreaks, killing 7 people in 2002. And in recent years, restaurants in both America and Spain have been affected – one outbreak being traced back to an ornamental fountain in a restaurant lobby.

Large hotels, hospitals, museums and offices pose a higher risk due to the sheer size and complexity of their heating and hot water systems. But high-risk installations in buildings of any size include showers, spa baths, water features and rooms with low/infrequent use.

Trust the experts. UK manufacturer, TM Electronics, leads the field in temperature measurement equipment for legionella prevention, supplying the hospitality sector with robust, waterproof thermometers, specialist surface/immersion probes and low-cost kits and accessories. 

MD, Tom Sensier, says: “Our reliable fast-response thermometers and discrete sensors combine perfectly with the ingenious TC Wall Port - as small and unobtrusive as a phone socket - making your testing regime much quicker and easier than ever before.”

More details

What is a TC Wall Port?  A thermocouple test port (52 x 52 mm) for spot checks on water outlets with difficult or impaired access. Temperatures are taken by ‘plugging’ in a standard thermocouple thermometer - much simpler than dismantling boxing or working at height to access covered tanks.

How does it work? -  Discrete fine-wire sensors (available in a variety of lengths) are attached to the temperature test point (such as a pipe or tank) and left in-situ. The wires are fitted into conduits or run neatly to the TC Wall Port which is screwed to the wall.  

Paperless recording. For a paperless recording system - less vulnerable to human error - the front cover of the test port is recessed to take an ID or barcode label which can be scanned by TME’s MM7000 Bluetooth Barcode thermometer. This combination allows 1,000s of locations and temperatures to be logged, stored and downloaded to PC/PDA, using free open-source software. 

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