Healthy and Safe Facility Handbook
The Healthy & Safe Facility Handbook - Free Download

Mold Remediation - Communication With Building Occupants

Communication with building occupants is essential for successful mold remediation. Some occupants will naturally be concerned about mold growth in their building and the potential health impacts. Occupants’ perceptions of the health risk may rise if they perceive that information is being withheld from them. The status of the building investigation and remediation should be openly communicated including information on any known or suspected health risks.

 

Small remediation efforts will usually not require a formal communication process, but do be sure to take individual concerns seriously and use common sense when deciding whether formal communications are required. Individuals managing medium or large remediation efforts should make sure they understand and address the concerns of building occupants and communicate clearly what has to be done as well as possible health concerns.

 

Communication approaches include regular memos and/or meetings with occupants (with time allotted for questions and answers), depending on the scope of the remediation and the level of occupant interest. Tell the occupants about the size of the project, planned activities, and remediation timetable. Send or post regular updates on the remediation progress, and send or post a final memo when the project is completed or hold a final meeting. Try and resolve issues and occupant concerns as they come up. When building-wide communications are frequent and open, those managing the remediation can direct more time toward resolving the problem and less time to responding to occupant concerns.

 

If possible, remediation activities should be scheduled during off-hours when building occupants are less likely to be affected. Communication is important if occupants are relocated during remediation. The decision to relocate occupants should consider the size of the area affected, the extent and types of health effects exhibited by the occupants, and the potential health risks associated with debris and activities during the remediation project. When considering the issue of relocation, be sure to inquire about, accommodate, and plan for individuals with asthma, allergies, compromised immune systems, and other health-related concerns. Smooth the relocation process and give occupants an opportunity to participate in resolution of the problem by clearly explaining the disruption of the workplace and work schedules. Notify individuals of relocation efforts in advance, if possible.

 

Excerpted from Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings by EPA.

 

References

American Academy of Pediatrics, Committee on Environmental Health. “Toxic Effects of Indoor Air Molds.” Pediatrics. Volume 101, pp. 712-714. 1996.

 

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists. Bioaerosols: Assessment and Control. Macher, J., editor. ACGIH. Cinncinati, OH. ISBN 1-882417-29-1. 1999.

 

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists. Guidelines for the Assessment of Bioaerosols in the Indoor Environment. ISBN 0-936712-83-X. 1989.

 

American Industrial Hygiene Association. Field Guide for the Determination of Biological Contaminants in Environmental Samples. Dillon, H. K., Heinsohn, P. A., and Miller, J. D., editors. Fairfax, VA. 1996.

 

American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers. Method of Testing General Ventilation Air-Cleaning Devices for Removal Efficiency by Particle Size. ASHRAE Standard 52.2. 2000.

 

American Society for Microbiology. Manual of Environmental Microbiology. Hurst, C., Editor in Chief. ASM Press. Washington, DC. 1997.

 

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Clean-up Procedures for Mold in Houses. ISBN 0-662-21133-2. 1993.

 

The Clean Trust, The Clean Trust S500, Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration, 2nd Edition. 1999.

 

Eastern New York Occupational and Environmental Health Center. Proceedings of the International Conference, Saratoga Springs, NY. October 6-7, 1994. Fungi and Bacteria in Indoor Air Environments - Health Effects, Detection, and Remediation. Johanning, E., and Yang, C., editors. Eastern New York Occupational Health Program. Latham, NY. 1995.

 

Eastern New York Occupational and Environmental Health Center. Bioaerosols, Fungi and Mycotoxins: Health Effects, Assessment, Prevention and Control. Johanning, E., editor. Albany, NY. 1999. (Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Fungi, Mycotoxins and Bioaerosols: Health Effects, Assessment, Prevention and Control. September 23-25, 1998.)

 

Gravesen, S., Frisvad, J., and Samson, R. Microfungi. Munksgaard. Copenhagen, Denmark. 1994.

 

“Indoor Mold and Children’s Health.” Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol. 107, Suppl. 3, June 1999.

 

Lstiburek, J. Building Science Corporation Builder’s Guide, Mixed-Humid Climates. Building Science Corporation and the Energy Efficient Building Association. 1999.

 

National Academy of Sciences, Committee on the Assessment of Asthma and Indoor Air. Clearing the Air: Asthma and Indoor Air Exposures. National Academy Press. 2000.

 

National Academy of Sciences. Indoor Allergens: Assessing and Controlling Adverse Health Effects. National Academy Press. 1993.

 

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Guide to the Selection and Use of Particulate Respirators Certified under 42 CFR 84. DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 96-101. January 1996.

 

New York City Department of Health, Bureau of Environmental & Occupational Disease Epidemiology. Guidelines on Assessment and Remediation of Fungi in Indoor Environments. 2000.

 

Occupational Safety & Health Administration. Respiratory Protection Standard, 29 CFR 1910.134. 63 FR 1152. January 8, 1998.

 

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Should You Have the Air Ducts In Your Home Cleaned? EPA-402-K-97-002. October 1997.


Mold Remediation - Communication With Building Occupants

Created on June 7th, 2011.  Last Modified on January 15th, 2015

The Healthy Facilities Institute provides the information on HealthyFaciltiesInstitute.com as a free service to the public.

 

While an effort is made to ensure the quality of the content and credibility of sources listed on this site, HFI provides no warranty - expressed or implied - and assumes no legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product or process disclosed on or in conjunction with the site. The views and opinions of the authors or originators expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of HFI: its principals, executives, board members, advisors or affiliates.

About EPA

The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is to protect human health and the environment. Since 1970, the EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people. At laboratories located throughout the nation, the agency works to assess environmental conditions and to identify, understand and solve current and future environmental problems.

 
 
 
 

© 2010 - 2017 Healthy Facilities Institute®
All Rights Reserved
News / About / Contact Us

Proud Supporter of:

OnlineCourses.com

OpenCourseWare

Disclaimer

The Healthy Facilities Institute provides the information on HealthyFaciltiesInstitute.com as a free service to the public.

 

While an effort is made to ensure the quality of the content and credibility of sources listed on this site, HFI provides no warranty - expressed or implied - and assumes no legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product or process disclosed on or in conjunction with the site. The views and opinions of the authors or originators expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of HFI: its principals, executives, board members, advisors or affiliates.

Sitemap