New Emergency Health Regulations to combat Legionnaires’ Disease
On Monday, Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced the emergency health regulations. As per the regulations, it will be required in New York to have the testing and inspection of cooling towers to combat Legionnaires’ Disease.
As per the law, building owners having cooling towers will be required to register with the state health department within a month. The rules require regular checking of the towers for legionella bacteria and if anything suspicious found then owners need to immediately disinfect the towers.
The new rule also requires the building owners to collect samples and obtain culture testing in the next 30 days. The US Centers for Disease Control said that the bacteria grow in warm water and is generally found in cooling towers, hot tubs, hot water tanks, large plumbing systems and decorative fountains.
Cuomo’s office has stated that the new rule was made with the consultation of the office of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. “This summer’s outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease caused concern in communities across the state and today we are moving forward to help prevent future outbreaks and keep our neighborhoods safe”, said Cuomo.
Employees of state or local health departments will be eligible to carry out the inspections of the cooling towers. The new rules will ensure that building owners fulfill their responsibilities and also provide the important information to combat the spread of Legionella bacteria.
Penalties will be given to those who do not follow regulations. By November 1, the cooling towers will need to be certified.
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