I’m sure you think about questions like:
- How secure is your facility?
- Do you manage your assets on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis?
- How are you managing them?
- How efficient is it?
These questions could apply to several scenarios, but what if someone asked about your water safety plan? Do you have one? Do you think you need one?
Facilities containing cooling towers, hot tubs, large plumbing systems, and HVAC units are at risk of catching and spreading the bacteria, Legionella.
Legionella is a bacterium that causes legionnaires’ disease, flourishing in air conditioning and central heating systems. It has the ability to survive, replicate, and exhibit resistance in high temperatures making it dangerous for those in contact with it. You are exposed to liabilities without a water safety plan, and a mechanism to manage the intrusion.
How Legionella can be managed
Facility owners are asking what can be done to protect their facilities from risk of infection to their water systems. Experts in the field have established a best practice standard for what should be done based on the scientific and time-tested process of HACCP management.
This process involves forming a team to identify hazards that may be within your water system and from that point a control system is developed. Verification procedures are developed to make sure functionality is confirmed.
This control system could then be monitored using an EAM/CMMS to identify any changes to the system.
Prevention of disease from building water systems is the responsibility of the facility owner. Researchers have shown, every year 4,000 people in the U.S. will die from Legionnaires’ disease and there will be an estimated 25,000 new cases. Each case is the result of exposure to a poorly managed building water system, which means every case is preventable.
The EAM organizes the physical and fiscal information of enterprise assets on one platform, follows the work flows associated with managing assets, supports the business processes of managing the receiving, assigning, deploying, and retiring assets. From an operational perspective, it tracks the physical whereabouts of the assets, who have custody of them at any point of time, and the physical condition of the assets.
The CMMS tracks the maintenance activities and costs for the equipment that require maintenance.
EAM/CMMS Working Together
EAM tracks the entire enterprise asset portfolio, including IT and physical assets, equipment and buildings, fixed assets and consumables, while CMMS tracks a subset of that. EAM will track the life cycle of your water system allowing staff to prepare for maintenance in the future to protect not only your assets but your consumers, which is where CMMS comes into play by focusing on the equipment life.
Instead of waiting for a problem to arise or fixing it at a higher cost, you have the ability to put a plan in place and implement the use of an EAM/CMMS. This will put your business in control and the ability to manage the quality of your water on your schedule not someone or something else’s.
In conclusion, if every case of Legionella could have been avoided with a proper system in place, would you take the risk of not implementing an EAM/CMMS into your water system?