26 Apr What are the Legal Requirements for Duct Cleaning?
There are many regulations and safety procedures for commercial properties that determine how equipment is installed and maintained. Over recent years, the importance of clean and safe working conditions has improved a great deal with new health and safety rules being introduced. Duct cleaning falls into this category, ensuring that air quality in working environments meets a certain standard. Several regulations mean there is a legal requirement for duct cleaning.
Health & Safety Work Act 1974
Introduced several decades ago, the Health & Safety Work Act 1974 enforces a common duty of care for employees and visitors.
The Occupiers Liability Act 1984
Similarly to the law above, The Occupiers Liability Act 1984 states that occupiers of a property have a duty of care to those within.
The Workplace Health, Safety & Welfare Regulations 1992
This regulation was put in place to ensure that there are suitable provisions to ventilate every enclosed workplace properly. The law states that air should be of a certain quantity and quality, either being fresh or purified. At the same time, codes of practice were published to provide advice on how to be compliant. Within these codes of practice, ventilation and air conditioning systems should be cleaned regularly to meet approved standards. Also, testing should be carried out to ensure there isn’t a drop in air quality or any contaminants. More recent revisions of this law include that ventilation should also be free from faults that may also affect workers’ health, safety, and welfare.
It’s easy to see how duct cleaning plays a considerable role in ensuring ventilation and air conditioning systems comply with this law.
The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations
Under these regulations, employers have to assess health and safety risks from potentially hazardous substances in the workplace. These hazards include exposure to pathogens, dust and air quality. Employers must ensure that employees are protected from any substances that may be damaging to health.
The above laws and codes of practice are in place to protect individuals. Issues with air quality may not always be easy to spot, and so regulations around maintenance and testing are critical to ensure people’s welfare is protected.
It’s easy for ductwork to experience a build-up of dust, debris or encounter problems that can lead to bacteria growth and the air quality being dangerously affected. In closed environments or warmer workplaces, this can become very problematic and seriously affect the health of individuals.
Regular duct cleaning and maintenance are essential to comply with these laws. Failing to do so can lead to people’s health deteriorating and also legal claims against owners and employers. For these reasons, insurance companies are concerned with maintenance schedules, which will not cover a property that hasn’t had its ductwork cleaned regularly.
If you’re concerned about duct cleaning and how this may affect you, please get in touch, and our team will be happy to help.