Water Hygiene

Keeping your water supply safe

It is important to keep your water supply clean and fresh. Most hot and cold water systems contain bacteria. A harmful type of bacteria is Legionella pneumophila, which can cause Legionnaires disease.

Legionnaires’ disease is a form of pneumonia which can be fatal. It can affect anybody and is caused by breathing in small droplets of water contaminated with Legionella bacteria.

The disease is most harmful to the elderly, or people with chest or lung problems. Not everyone exposed to Legionella bacteria becomes ill. It is not contagious and you cannot get it from drinking water.

The signs of Legionnaire’s disease are similar to flu symptoms:

  • High temperature
  • Fever or chills
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Muscle pain
  • Dry cough

If you think that you or someone in your home has Legionnaires’ disease, contact your doctor immediately.

Risk Assessments

We are carrying out risk assessments on our properties to identify any possible issues.  If required, our contractors will carry out appropriate repair works.

If your property is selected for risk assessment, our risk assessors will contact you by phone, or write to you to arrange access. Our risk assessors will have photographic identification when they visit your home. 

Remember don’t give access to the assessor unless they have shown you their identification.

On the day that you have agreed for the assessment you should empty the sink and wash hand basins and have the boiler turned on. The assessors will check storage tanks, water outlets and shower heads.

If you have any concerns about water hygiene in your home or need further advice:

Phone - 03448 920 900 (between 8.30am and 5.00pm)

Email -  waterhygienemanagement@nihe.gov.uk

Further Information

The Health & Safety Executive is the government body that is responsible for water hygiene and Legionnaires’ disease.

For further information and advice please visit the Health & Safety Executive website at www.hse.gov.uk/legionnaires 

For more information and advice on how to keep your water supply safe, read our Water Hygiene leaflet.