Legionella and other waterborne illnesses

If your industry uses water in its production processes or in the workplace, you could be at risk of harbouring dangerous legionella bacteria. CTI can help reduce the risk of contamination with an independent audit and inspection of the current water safety management plan and procedures. A comprehensive report and gap analysis will be produced complete with relevant recommendations and advice on compliance. Legionella sampling and analysis alone is not sufficient to protect the stakeholders. Call our experienced team today for a full, independent, Legionella and waterborne illness risk assessment.

One of the most dangerous waterborne bacteria is legionella. Responsible for Legionnaires’ disease, it thrives in warm water and is present in numerous water systems including cooling water systems, central air conditioning systems, domestic hot water systems, fountains, swimming pools, spas and other sources that use the public water supply.

The types of business that can be affected are:

  • Hotels and restaurants
  • Commercial buildings
  • Industrial companies (cooling towers and air-conditioning)
  • Ships and off shore rigs
  • Schools
  • Sports halls, swimming and leisure pools, spas and saunas
  • Dental practices
  • Hospitals and care homes

We can help you reduce the risk of contamination with regular audits of your management controls and examination of your water quality. This can decrease the likelihood of bacterial growth and drastically reduce future contamination. Our accredited teamsincluds recognised experts who have wide international experience with water systems and solving complex outbreaks causes. We can efficiently inspect all suspected risk locations and develop a risk management protocol that will "engineer out" the risk of Legionella and other waterborne illnesses


MERCHANT SHIPPING NOTICE MSN 1845(M) Part 8 of the Maritime Labour Convention Minimum Requirements Regulations (MLC 2006) needs to be read together with this Merchant Shipping Notice, as this Notice sets out standards which must be met in order to comply with legal obligations under those Regulations. Failure to comply with those obligations may be a criminal offence under the Regulations.

The purpose of this Merchant Shipping Notice is to set out requirements for provision of food and fresh water, in accordance with Maritime Labour Convention 2006 (MLC 2006).

The requirements set out must be complied with regardless of the age, size and type of vessel other than those specifically exempted.

The shipowner and master of a ship must ensure that food and drinking water of appropriate quality, nutritional value and quantity is provided

Bacterial contamination is the most serious risk to food and fresh water safet

Prevention using risk assessment and management approach is one of the most effective means of ensuring food and fresh water safety


This annex covers fresh water loading and supply arrangements, disinfection, storage, distribution systems and maintenance

1. Introduction

The MLC (2006) requirea the supply of drinking and fresh water to be such as to prevent any risk of contamination.

Improperly managed water is an established infectious disease transmission route on ships. Outbreaks of illness have been associated with contaminated bunkered water, cross connections between potable and non- potable water, improper loading procedures, poor design and construction of potable water storage tanks and inadequate disinfection. Evidence from outbreaks indicates that sewage is one of the more common sources of the pathogens that cause waterborne disease outbreaks on ships.

The most effective means of ensuring the safety of the fresh water supply is through the use of a risk assessment and management approach that covers the whole process from loading to delivery at the tap and includes a planned maintenance system. All of the information gathered should be used to develop a Fresh Water Safety Plan (FWSP), particularly for ships with a complex system, which could be incorporated into the ship’s planned maintenance system. A FWSP should be based on the following format.

  • System assessment and hazard analysis (including an assessment of source water loaded on to the ship)
  • Management plan and control measures, (the selection and operation of appropriate treatment processes)
  • Monitoring and corrective action system in accordance with the FWSP (the prevention of contamination/re-contamination during storage and distribution.)

Control measures (treatments) will be influenced by the quality of the source water. In the event of potable water becoming unfit for human consumption then the tank(s) and distribution system should be drained, super-chlorinated and flushed in accordance with section 7 (Maintenance of water systems) below.

In addition to the above the ship should consider requesting water samples from the supplier prior to bunkering