Mold: Understanding the Potential Liability!

By Stephen Rone

Mold is one of the greatest dangers for both a home and the people who live in it. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, inhaling or touching mold can cause a broad range of health problems covering allergic reactions, asthma attack, and irritation in the eyes and respiratory tract.

The Cost of Mold
Mold has been the subject of many lawsuits. In addition to litigation and health issues, mold can cost in lost productivity and increased insurance costs. Every year, mold causes millions of dollars in damage to homes.

Levels of Mold Remediation
A professional remediation company has a set of protocols that they rigorously follow. They follow the guidelines of the IICRC S-520 Mold Remediation Standard and EPA’s Mold Removal Document. There are six levels of mold remediation:

  • Level I – A little isolated area less than 10 square feet
    • Level II – Intermediate sized isolated area of 10 – 30 square feet
    • Level III – Large isolated area 30 – 100 square feet
    • Level IV – Extensive contamination over 100 contiguous square feet
    • Level V-VI – 5-6 Involve HVAC contaminations

A level I or II contamination will be remediated promptly and efficiently. Higher levels require a detailed approach including containment and a negative air system.

Every year, mold causes millions of dollars in damage to homes.

Professionals recommend clearance test after the completion of any remediation project involving a level IV contamination in a commercial or institutional building. Any contamination involving HVAC systems, and contamination can cause health problems. An independent agency takes samples and compares them to outdoor levels to confirm that mold remediation is complete.

Remediation Protocols
Professionals recommend that a customized Mold Remediation Protocols be set in place. For industrial and institutional sites with greater than level IV contamination and commercial jobs with Levels 5-6, Professionals will automatically be brought in to consult. Commercial projects with lower levels of contamination and residential projects are remediated using established protocols.

Professionals have the equipment to handle large projects, such as air scrubbers, HEPA vacuums, negative air machines, containment systems, and necessary protective equipment.  Personnel should be trained in OSHA standards for hazardous materials, including continuing education on latest industry protocols. Professionals will secure contaminated areas with a containment chamber and remove the mold using best industry practice.

If you suspect your facility or home has a mold problem, call a professional at once! They consult, inspect and test the structure. They will then make a remediation plan if needed and secure the affected area to bring it back to safety. They use only the safest, proven mold remediation techniques.