What You Need to Know About Managing Legionella Risk

legionellaBack in June 2013, the human cost associated with legionella was on full display when 60-year-old cancer patient John Pearson died after contracting the disease at the Wesley Hospital in Brisbane.

 

The disease is an infection of the lungs caused by legionella bacteria which are found most commonly in water and soil and can be present in water cooling systems in cooling towers as well as water in other settings such as whirlpool spas, plumbing and shower heads.

 

Unfortunately, that outbreak was not the only time the disease has raised its head. In Brisbane, for example, a patient tested positive in the Mater Private Hospital in January 2016. In Sydney, 15 people contracted the pneumonia-like condition after visiting the CBD during two separate outbreaks in March and May. One man in his 80s died from the infection.

 

In response, authorities in New South Wales are reviewing regulation in this area. A discussion paper published in December proposed that building occupiers be required to maintain risk management plans in respect of cooling towers, conduct annual audits of water cooling systems and send evidence of compliance with risk management plans in to local government. The paper also recommended building occupiers notify the local council about legionella bacteria readings of 1000 cfu/mL or above or readings of HPC levels of 5,000,000 cfu/mL or above. The paper proposes that testing of water cooling systems for legionella and heterotrophic plate count (HPC) would be required monthly.

 

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by Andrew Heaton | SOURCEABLE

Berijiklian Wants Infrastructure Everywhere and More Affordable Housing

Gladys-Berijiklian-1Infrastructure and housing affordability have emerged as the leading priorities for New South Wales as the lady has overseen the commencement of a massive range of transport projects is elected as the state’s new Premier.

 

In a party room meeting, the NSW Liberal Party elected Gladys Berijiklian as its new leader to replace Mike Baird, who resigned last week.

 

Berijiklian is widely respected within the property and infrastructure sector after she oversaw the commencement of a massive program of public transport investment during her four years as Transport Minister from 2011 to 2015.

 

This includes the extension of the Sydney Light Rail Dulwich Line and the commencement of the multi-billion-dollar North West Rail Link.

 

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by Ahn Jae Wook | SOURCEABLE

Glow-In-The-Dark Bicycle Path

glowing-blue-bike-lane-TPA-instytut-badan-technicznych-poland-6Cycling is one of the most eco-friendly ways to travel, and thanks to this solar-powered bike lane that glows in the dark, it just got even moreso.

 

The luminous blue cycling strip, which can be found near Lidzbark Warminski in the north of Poland, was created by TPA Instytut Badań Technicznych Sp. z o.o. It’s made from a synthetic material that can give out light for up to ten hours at a time once charged by the sun throughout the day. Although the concept was inspired by Studio Roosegaarde’s Starry Night bike lane in the Netherlands, the technology is quite different as the Dutch version uses LEDs whereas this one is entirely dependent upon solar power. It’s still in the testing phase at the moment, but let’s hope that this bright idea will be implemented in other countries in the very near future.

 

by James Gould-Bourn | boredpanda

How Can You Design a Bushfire-proof Home?

fire-house

 

Once again, bushfire season is upon us, and for many Australians, it’s a time of anxiety when it comes to considering the safety of their friends, family and home.

 

There is no shortage of tips when it comes to protecting your house retroactively, but recently there has been a surge in thinking proactively. Instead of designing your dream home and then altering it later to fit bushfire safety standards, it is even more beneficial to design your home specifically so it has more chance of being left standing if a bushfire should ever sweep through.

 

How is my property at risk? Starting at the very base of the design process, the best way to find out what kind of risk your property has in bushfire season is to get a professional to conduct a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) assessment. The assessment will place your property on a scale outlining the risk your property faces due to its proximity to bush, the slope of the property and the proximity to main roads, as well as a whole host of other factors. The BAL level determines the construction method and materials that must be used when building on your property.

 

For all properties, the main points of concern are embers becoming trapped in small spaces and the escape plans in a fire emergency. For example, if you have a timber deck that is at risk of catching fire, do you have another way to exit the house?

 

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by Ruth Newman | SOURCEABLE

How Intelligent Buildings Can Enhance Human Productivity

building-automationIn addition to increasing energy efficiency by permitting the unified management of the myriad sub-systems housed by a given facility, intelligent building technologies can also raise the productivity of their human occupants and thus benefit the bottom line of businesses.

 

Much of the attention directed towards intelligent building technologies has tended to focus on the benefits that they can bring to the energy efficiency and environmental impact of built assets.

 

Intelligent buildings can cut energy consumption and achieve more efficient resource usage by integrating multiple sub-systems into a single management platform, permitting the enhanced coordination and operation of a given facility as a whole.

 

Not only does this reduce the impact of a built asset upon the broader environment by shrinking its carbon footprint, it also translates into economic benefits for owners or occupants in the form of reduced utilities bills for power and water consumption.

 

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by Marc HOWE | SOURCEABLE