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DVGW research project: growth of legionellae in cold water starts at 30°C, operational temperatures up to 25°C are uncritical

The DVGW Center of Technology Water (TZW) has examined the growth of legionella bacteria in potable water cold. The findings are interesting and should calm all plant operators and owners who are not capable of keeping cold water temperatures under 25°C. According to the TZW significant multiplication of legionellae begins at 30°C.

Infektion risks at restart: RKI warns about Legionella after corona-induced shutdown

The Robert-Koch-Institute (RKI) warns in its current epidemiological bulletin of June 11th (issue 24 of 2020) about infektion risks through legionella bacteria in drinking water installations that have been out of order or not in operation for a longer period of time. If the water system has not been maintained properly, legionella bacteria may have grown exponentially in the pipes.

Legionella in the shade of Corona: 12.000 water samples taken in Covid19-times evaluated

In the proceedings of the dominating covid19 pandemic industrial, commercial and private buildings had to be shutdown to avoid the spread of the corona virus. The German Robert-Koch-Institute (RKI) warned not to neglect the health hazards coming from drinking water installations in terms of legionella growth if the facilities are out of operation for a longer period of time. We took a look at our own set of drinking water data all gathered in corona-times - with surprising results.

Follow-up study on legionellae shows seasonal effect: 20% less contaminations detected during the summer
On January 31st, Professor Kistemann from the Institute for Hygiene and Public Health of University of Bonn (ihph) presented first results of the follow-up study on legionellae occurence and growth in domestic drinking water installations (warm water systems) for the sponsors of the study being all members of the work group water analytics of figawa, the German Associations of firms in the gas and water sector.

Compared with the initial study the quality of the data provided and assessed was significantly better. Almost every single drinking water data set could be assigned to the different sampling points: drinking water heater outlet, re-entry in the drinking water heating system and peripheral tapping points (often in apartments).

The rate of samples that exceeded the threshold value of 100 colony forming units per 100 ml drinking water was at 6% a little bit higher than the rate of the former study (5,6%).

What was scientifically interesting is the fact that a seasonal effect was proven: In the summer the occurence of legionella exceeding the 100 CFU-limit was 20% higher than in the winter. Referring to Prof. Kistemann the difference is statistically significant since the data base consisted of 305,000 water samples and test results.

WATERcontrol starts international business: drinking water distribution system of the Geman Embassy in Ankara/Turkey checked for pathogenic bacteria

On November 27th, 2011 we signed the first contract for legionella testing in respond to the new German Drinking Water Directive. Exactly, seven years later, on November 27th, 2018, we started our international business - in Turkey!

BBA-conference on technical risks on February 7th including round table of safety experts

Safety is a high good that we take for granted. But new technologies often produce new dangers no one thought of in the first place. Dense building envelopes, walls and windows prevent sufficient air exchange. In consequence, harmful gases (toxic or explosive) such as natural gas, carbon monoxide or LPG can gather in the rooms especially when the air conditioning is turned off or out of order.

On February 7th, 2019, the educational institute Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Immobilienwirtschaft (BBA) held a conference at the Grand Hotel Esplanade in Berlin on safety topics of operator's responsibilities such as fire protection, carbon monoxide detectors, checks of gas pipes and drinking water installations for potentially pathogenic germs.

The expert panel that concluded the conference circles aorund the question whether the price for safety is too high considering the declining number of accidents.

WATERcontrol speaks about amended drinking water regulations in front of technical committee of VdW

On February 7th, 2018, the fourth revision of the German Drinking Water Directive was on the agenda of the technical committee of  VdW Niedersachsen Bremen, the professional association of housing companies located in Lower Saxony and Bremen.

WATERcontrol presented the changes in the drinking water laws that are relevant for the real estate sector.


Grundeigentum (real estate): legionella in drinking water – from first to forth amendment of the German Drinking Water Directive

Shortly before entry into force of the forth amendment of German Drinking Water laws our chief operating officer Marcus Pikarek gives a comprehensive summary in the real estate expert magazine Grundeigentum (issue 18 of 2018) outlining the development of the duty to test drinking water for legionella from its introduction in the year 2011 until today.

The article focuses an specific changes of the legal frame work that affect the housing industry considerably.


10 years duty to maintain safety on premises: the anniversary conference will be celebrated on November 21st and 22nd, 2017

The European Educational Centre (EBZ) will hold a conference on safety on (residential) premises in November 2017. Exactly 10 years ago, November 2007, the first meeting of experts on safety issues concerning residential buildings took place. In retrospect: Has the safety awareness changed significantly in the pastr decade? Where do we stand today, when it comes to safe living in our homes?


Tenants magazine AT HOME: Stadtsiedlung Heilbronn with WATERcontrol active against Legionella

In August 2016 the residential property company Stadtsiedlung Heilbronn gave us the job of legionella testing in their drinking water installations. The current issue of their resident's magazine AT HOME gives a short summary of the collaboration of our two firms to deal with the problem of potable water contaminated with legionella. The article includes a check list for house owners and tenants what they can do to minimize the risk of biofilm growth in the domestic piping system.

figawa-work group water analytics goes forward: After nationwide status analysis a more detailed study on legionellae follows

The figawa-work group water analytics mandates the Institute for Hygiene and Public Health of University of Bonn (ihph) with a followup study on the occurrence of legionellae in drinking water systems. The research project shall deliver more detailed information than the prior status analysis. First results will be exspected in the end of 2017.


EWP: How many legionellae dwell in residential buildings?

In the May issue of energy | water practice, expert magazine of the energy and water industry, first results from the status analysis of the Institute for Hygiene and Public Health of the University of Bonn (ihph) on the occurrence of Legionellae in drinking water installations were published. The great numbers of tests that were assessed lead the authors to one question: How many drinking water installations are subject to testing nationwide?

BGH: Legionella come from drinking water in the house installation, District Court fails to consider evidence properly

In May 2015 the (German) Federal High Court of Justice (BGH) had to deal with charges of a tenant against his landlord that were based on his negligence to have the drinking water in the house installation tested for legionella contamination. The tenant died of a severe lung infection (pneumonia). His heir and daughter claims that the pneumonia was acquired by legionella bacteria from the apartment house he lived in.


Drinking water check-ups for legionella offered to enterprises re-opening their offices

Due to covid 19 many industrial, commercial and public buildings have not been used for several months. Since the numbers of new infections with the corona virus have been going down lately companies take a shot at re-opening their businesses. If in the facilities re-opening now drinking water installations have not been in operation or have not been flushed in certain intervals water stagnation may have led to exponential growth of biofilms and - along with that - pathogenic bacteria such as pseudomonas aeruginosa and legionella in the pipes. 

We offer all firms (before re-opening) a thorough check-up of the drinking water for legionella and other pathogenic germs to attractive conditions. Do not hesitate to ask us. We work for German industries as well as for Anglo-American companies from commercial and industrial branches that run subsidiaries in Germany.



Although coming from the housing sector we have seen an increase in business relations with industrial  enterprises. Before the German drinking water directive passed the Bundesrat firms of the producing and processing industry have always been very sensitive for safety issues. Labor protection laws ordered them to have the water used or processed tested for potentially pathogenic bacteria.

Gas leak detection with GAS-Control

WATERcontrol has evolved from the "big sister" GAS-Control GmbH, a specialist for preventive gas safety checks within builidngs. GAS-Control has worked for the German housing industry for 25 years.

To detect gas leakages, even on concealed lines, the firm operates with portable gas leak detectors that pinpoint tracers of natural gas where they escape from the pipe.