Risk Assessments

Legionella Risk Assessment – assessing the risk from legionella bacteria on site

 Class 1 Survey – the top of the range product.

A comprehensive, detailed, very thorough survey, report and site information providing considerable reassurance to the client. The

additional data gathered and time spent on site and producing the report will ensure the responsible person is confident that ‘no stone

has been left unturned’ and they have every piece of relevant information required.

Suitable for customers who want

  • extra reassurance to protect their reputation on site(s)

  • the highest margin of safety for people on their site(s)

  • much more information about the site(s) to manage the risk

  • management information for complex sites e.g. factories

  • where previous assessments and management of the risk from legionella has been lacking

  • where concerns or investigations by enforcing authorities require a full-scale approach

 Class 2 survey – the mid-range product.

A professional survey and report that satisfies the ‘suitable and sufficient’ requirement comfortably whilst saving the additional time and

money spent on a Class 1 survey. This will be appropriate for most sites and provide the decision-maker with enough information to

implement any required control measures, remedial works and other follow up actions with confidence.

Suitable for customers who want

  • a proper job doing in a normal turnaround time

  • a professional assessment without spending more than is necessary

  • good quality reports that are concise

  • a saving of time and money whilst still providing the right advice

Clients understand that risk management is usually an ongoing process and that subsequent site visits will build on the information

 already gained at this stage.

 Class 3 survey – the cost-saving product.

Remember that risk assessments can be ‘suitable and sufficient’ without spending hours and £££s that go way beyond what is appropriate. Some smaller sites or those with limited water systems can be assessed in a straightforward way. The ACoP L8 page 5  paragraph 20 states this clearly and Watercare believes customers should be encouraged to save money where applicable provided of course it still ensures compliance with the law.

Suitable for customers who want

  • an overview that may be sufficient

  • information on sites with smaller, simpler water systems

  • multiple sites doing where Class 2 or 1 surveys would be expensive

  • cost savings whilst still complying with the law

Remember that an initial Class 3 or 2 survey can be upgraded on the day or later if required.


There is of course wide variation in costs across the market and usual rules apply. Consider what you want and be clear about the site(s) water systems, previous or existing risk assessments and control measures. Remember that paying more for good quality professional advice is very likely to be more cost-effective in the medium to longer term. It pays to go to an independent company compared to the ‘full-service providers’ who are very likely to oversubscribe follow up products and services.

So a typical Class 3 survey would be charged at around £150 – £300 depending on the number of sites, location, access to the site and safe access on site.

A Class 2 survey is in the region of £350 – £550 again taking into account travel time, being accompanied around the site, having all records available to inspect and getting a decent cup of tea!

The Class 1 surveys as you can imagine are priced at £650 – £1,250 normally but can go up to £3,000 or more for large factories. It is crucial to have a site guide, lots of site plans, drawings etc available to reference and ample time to ‘get the detail’. Photographs are included in all 3 survey types.

Class 2 and 1 also provide schematic drawings. All Watercare legionella risk assessments (LRA) will include relevant independent recommendations. These will state ‘there is no reasonably foreseeable risk’ where this is true in the professional opinion of the risk assessor as stated in ACoP L8 page 6 paragraph 26. This is very rare in competitors who rely on customers’ fears, lack of understanding and psychological state believing they are getting ‘the right advice’ when in most cases they are getting a ‘dressed up sales quote’ as recommendations in order to sell follow up work that might not be necessary.

Where there is a reasonably foreseeable risk’ then again the independent recommendations will advise the responsible person what needs to be done and what is additional. At all times the customer will feel they are in control as there is no ‘catch’ or push for follow up sales. All Watercare hope and work towards is that customer satisfaction leads to referrals and recommendations!

  • Auditing of Legionella Control Programmes This area covers a review of existing control programmes, risk assessment, recommendations, results in the logbook and associated information. The benefit is having an independent check that either confirms all is well (hopefully) or that improvements or correction should be made. The outcomes are then better programmes, improved risk management, cost savings, increased confidence, keeping any sub-contractors on their toes, better management information and a measure of the level of compliance against ACoP L8 using the HSE Audit document. This is particularly useful where there are multiple sites, incumbent water hygiene providers getting too cosy or perhaps high-value contracts that may have become ‘bloated’ over time. Normal fees are around £100-£500 per site depending on factors mentioned in A. Legionella Risk Assessments.

  • Training This links strongly with the responsible persons and deputies section as training is crucial to success. It is often seen as an afterthought and sometimes ignored by clients. In fact, it is probably the single most important strategy after getting a risk assessment done. That well-trained staff know what to do and the outcomes are usually better awareness, increased understanding, useful results, better anticipation of problems, savings of time and money, improved morale, higher compliance and increased self-esteem in your staff. Normal charges are around £150 – £200 per course for 1 delegate but this can be reduced to suit the company and site depending on numbers involved, duration, location etc.

  • Consultancy This incorporates a lot of the above into a package. It also extends into areas of planning, design of water systems, building management, studying costs and effectiveness of different control measures and monitoring programmes and management of the whole. This is suitable for larger organisations typically multiple sites, coordinating staff and resources and management information. The outcomes are better use and targeting of resources, improved planning, increased efficiencies, reduced costs, more appropriate results and a feeling of better control by management. Normal fees are around £1,000 -£5,000 per project and vary according to the volume of information to review, management information available, number of staff to liaise with and any other relevant influencing factors. Again fees can be negotiated according to the client’s needs.

  • John Spence is also Managing Director of Emanuel Spence Maintenance Services Ltd a Plumbing and Heating Company so is well placed to offer consultancy on water and plumbing services.


As with most businesses it is customer-driven! Watercare strive for high levels of service and want to carry out work and ‘turn it around’

ASAP. But as we all know it is about the size of the order book, resources available, any other factors to consider and issues to resolve.

Ideally work is booked in 1-2 weeks ahead and provisional reports produced within a week (for risk assessments and audits) with full reports (Class 2 or 1) within 28 days.

Training is booked and planned on selected dates as agreed with clients if on-site or on open courses as scheduled. Consultancy is more open-ended and timings are as agreed with the responsible person (or whoever) depending on the scope of the work. Again a swift conclusion is in everyone’s interest.

Naturally, these ebbs and flows and customer requirements vary. Any queue-jumping usually means paying a premium for making customers with orders already in then having to wait! But we do understand some decision-makers elsewhere in the empire sometimes make it harder for the person placing the order.

Watercare personnel will work with you for mutual best outcomes so as with lots of areas in life it’s down to the personal relationships making it work well. We want to provide good quality work at the right price in a good time to keep you very satisfied and us in business.

01642 226404