The regulation on evaporative cooling systems, cooling towers and wet separators (42.BImSchV) came into force on 19. August 2017. Moist exhaust air containing water droplets as aerosol rises from the above-mentioned plants. This can result in the spread of hazardous bacteria (especially Legionella) which can cause serious diseases when inhaled. The aim of the regulation is to prevent the formation of high concentrations of Legionella in the affected systems and to avoid health risks within their vicinity. The new regulation makes operators of evaporative cooling systems liable for proper hygienic maintenance and operation.
Plant operators must compile a hazard assessment (risk analysis and assessment) and report new and existing systems which fall within the scope of application. Notification duties begin on 20. August 2018. The aim is for these notifications to enable local authorities to take faster and more effective action in the case of a Legionella outbreak. Excluded from the regulation – in addition to various other special cases – are for instance emitting installations inside a factory shop.
The monitoring duties include the determination of reference values, regular laboratory measurements and internal inspections of the industrial water as well as the obligation to keep an operating log. In addition to these duties, there will also be a periodic review of the system every five years by an external expert. For the commissioning or re-commissioning of plants, there are also binding requirements such as processing a predefined checklist. In case an increase in the overall colony count of Legionella is detected, the operator must adhere to comprehensive obligations that depend on the extent of the increase and include the determination of the cause for the increase, the taking of required measures for proper operation, the documentation of causes and measures in the operating log, right up to the notification to the authorities responsible.
Within the framework of a legal check, Arqum can work out together with you the extent to which the new requirements apply to you and what obligations will arise as a result.
Your contact at Arqum: Christian Heinrichs