Under the requirements of the Health & Safety at work etc Act 1974 and COSHH 2002, every water system located where these regulations apply must have a suitable assessment carried out. It is highly advisable that any assessment completed follows the guidelines as laid down in BS8580: 2010

These assessments are completed in two stages, firstly a physical asset survey will be carried out to look at the pipework installation along with all outlets and storage cylinders both hot and cold. Once completed a desktop review will be carried out on all policies and procedures in place and all records will be reviewed to ensure that all necessary steps are being taken to reduce the risks.

In the instance of a domestic property a simple assessment is still required although this may be the last action that requires to be taken depending on the complexity of the water system found.

For most other buildings (office blocks, care homes, schools etc) after the initial risk assessment has been carried out a range of control measures will be required. These will be detailed in the assessment itself.

However it is important to keep in mind that even if you sub contract this work to a company it is still your responsibility to ensure that the person who carries out this work on your behalf is competent to do so.

29 The dutyholder must ensure that the person who carries out the risk assessment and provides advice on prevention and control of exposure must be competent to do so.

Once the assessment has been completed it is our policy to physically return the document to you so that we can discuss our findings and what you might need to do next. This also allows you the opportunity to ask questions and get clarification on any areas that you are unsure. This shouldn’t be the last time you use the document however as it should be updated by you as you take all of the remedial actions and start to complete them, starting with the highest priorities, to reduce the risks found. The assessment should be a living document and not just an ornament on your shelf!!!