Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) was applied for identifying and controlling exposure to pathogenic microorganisms encountered during normal sludge and wastewater handling at a 12,500 m3/d treatment plant utilising tertiary wastewater treatment and mesophilic sludge digestion. The hazardous scenarios considered were human exposure during treatment, handling, soil application and crop consumption, and exposure via water at the wetland-area and recreational swimming. A quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA), including rotavirus, adenovirus, haemorrhagic E. coli, Salmonella, Giardia and Cryptosporidium, was performed in order to prioritise pathogen hazards for control purposes. Human exposures were treated as individual risks but also related to the endemic situation in the general population. The highest individual health risk from a single exposure was via aerosols for workers at the belt press for sludge dewatering (virus infection risk = 1). The largest impact on the community would arise if children ingested sludge at the unprotected storage site, although in the worst-case situation the largest number of infections would arise through vegetables fertilised with sludge and eaten raw (not allowed in Sweden). Acceptable risk for various hazardous scenarios, treatment and/or reuse strategies could be tested in the model.

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