Bill seeking to regulate mold in public buildings in SC passes state House, Senate

A proposed bill that could bring South Carolina one step closer to regulating mold is now one step closer to becoming a reality.

House Bill 3127 is a resolution that will establish a committee that would study the impacts of mold and find the best way to get rid of it.

According to online records from the S.C. Legislature, the bill passed the House on Feb. 12 and then passed the Senate on March 14.

The committee would be called the Mold Abatement and Remediation Study Committee and would look at public policy issues relative to mold in public buildings, focus on the impacts of heath of children in public schools, and propose policy initiatives to remediate and get rid of mold problems.

The proposed legislation comes as many Horry County parents continue to express concerns over mold issues at local schools.

Last week, St. James Elementary School was proclaimed free of amplified mold spores after several rounds of testing and cleaning.

After mold became a concern at St. James, WMBF News put in a request for work orders at Horry County Schools since February 2015 that contained the words mold, mildew, humidity and air quality.

WMBF received about 90 pages worth of documents and some of those work orders contained concerns about mold growing in several different schools.

North Myrtle Beach Middle School, Conway High School, Lakewood Elementary School and Forestbrook Middle School are just some among the more than 30 schools where staff described potential mold and mildew issues over the last four years.

Article Source:
http://www.live5news.com/2019/03/18/bill-seeking-regulate-mold-public-buildings-sc-passes-state-house-senate/

Recent rains cause spike in mold growth

Residents across San Diego County say they’ve seen more mold in their homes after recent rainfall.

A number of mold testing and removal companies FOX 5 reached out to said they have seen a spike in business. One company said business has more than doubled and another said this has been one of the busiest weeks they have seen in years.

Mold has kicked Fernando Perez’s daughter out of her room in her Del Mar home.

“She’s obviously not very happy about it,” Perez said.

“If you see a discoloration I would recommend to send a picture. It’s the cheapest way to do this. Find a legit company send them a picture,” Lief said. “We can tell you if you actually need us.”

In this case, the Perez family said professional help was needed and they are glad they acted fast.

“It’s scary to think that people, if they’ve got leaks and they don’t see through to the dry wall and you don’t know it and people are sensitive, or have allergies, or asthma issues. God forbid the potential health issues you could have from unknown mold,” Perez said.

Recently, Perez said his teenager noticed a spot on the ceiling that appeared to be wet and stained. He called professionals to take a look — who in turn told him his family not only had a leak, but a mold problem in the already nearly renovated room.

“You would never know by opening this up that you would see that it would have been this bad,” Perez said as he showed FOX 5 the wall that was infested with mold.

Orange Restoration, a company that removes mold, stepped in to help. Owner Yaron Lief said the wet winter months have kept him and his employees busy answering calls.

“The average would be five or six a day and now we are maybe at 25 a day,” Lief said.

For those who think they might have a leak or mold issue, Lief suggests to get in touch with a professional because mold can affect people’s health — especially if they have underlying medical conditions.

Article Source:
https://fox5sandiego.com/2019/03/15/recent-rains-cause-spike-in-mold-growth/

Recent rains cause spike in mold growth

Residents across San Diego County say they’ve seen more mold in their homes after recent rainfall.

A number of mold testing and removal companies FOX 5 reached out to said they have seen a spike in business. One company said business has more than doubled and another said this has been one of the busiest weeks they have seen in years.

Mold has kicked Fernando Perez’s daughter out of her room in her Del Mar home.

“She’s obviously not very happy about it,” Perez said.

Recently, Perez said his teenager noticed a spot on the ceiling that appeared to be wet and stained. He called professionals to take a look — who in turn told him his family not only had a leak, but a mold problem in the already nearly renovated room.

“You would never know by opening this up that you would see that it would have been this bad,” Perez said as he showed FOX 5 the wall that was infested with mold.

Orange Restoration, a company that removes mold, stepped in to help. Owner Yaron Lief said the wet winter months have kept him and his employees busy answering calls.

“The average would be five or six a day and now we are maybe at 25 a day,” Lief said.

“If you see a discoloration I would recommend to send a picture. It’s the cheapest way to do this. Find a legit company send them a picture,” Lief said. “We can tell you if you actually need us.”

In this case, the Perez family said professional help was needed and they are glad they acted fast.

“It’s scary to think that people, if they’ve got leaks and they don’t see through to the dry wall and you don’t know it and people are sensitive, or have allergies, or asthma issues. God forbid the potential health issues you could have from unknown mold,” Perez said.

fox5sandiego.com/2019/03/15/recent-rains-cause-spike-in-mold-growth/

Why Base The Mold Inspection Report on IICRC Conditional Areas?

There are at least four reasons a mold inspector should consider using Conditional Areas as the basis for the mold inspection report. First, Conditional Areas are recommended in IICRC S520- 2015 as the basis for mold remediation activities.(1) Second, assigning Conditional Areas forces the mold inspector to view a structure in greater detail. Third, the inspection strategy determines the sampling plan and the data-interpretation plan. Fourth, a stratified strategy allows the mold inspector to collect select samples as composites, reducing the cost of the inspection. The typical strategy used in mold inspections is referred to as Professional Judgment. A more sophisticated approach is to use a stratification strategy; separating interior spaces into discrete areas. One example of a stratification strategy that is recommended by AIHA is Similar Exposure Groups.

(2) Another example of a stratified strategy is the concept of Conditional Areas as defined by IICRC in S520-2015.(1) Conditional Areas, which typically have been applied to mold remediation plans, are defined as: • Condition 1: Areas not affected by a water intrusion incident [no restoration]; • Condition 2: Areas affected by contaminant spores settling onto surfaces [restoration]; • Condition 3: Areas affected by a water intrusion or elevated humidity [remediation]. The Condition of an interior space is typically assessed by combining the information gained from the visual inspection, incident history, occupant interview, and the sample results. However, it should be noted that assessing the Condition of a space may require the appropriate samples to be collected. For example, if the soft-surface items in a living room had simply been contaminated by settled spores (Condition 2), they could be HEPA-vacuumed and restored to service. However, if the living room had been affected by elevated humidity for an extended period those items may be Condition 3 (interior surfaces colonized with mold growth). Differentiating between these two Conditions may be possible based on either the visual inspection or incident history. When this approach does not provide the necessary guidance, a differential sampling method may be used to determine Condition. (3) First, S520-2015 recommends that “Condition (1, 2, or 3) … should be assessed, documented, and reported to the client”. In addition, Part 6 (Mitigation) of the IAQA/AIHA Body of Knowledge document states the mold inspector is responsible for “identifying appropriate responses and including them in the mitigation plan”.(4) Although the remediation contractor is responsible for implementing appropriate responses, the mold inspector is the party responsible for identifying the appropriate responses. If the mold inspector does not use Conditional Areas as the basis for the inspection report, then how can the remediation contractor use them as the basis for the remediation? Second, a significant advantage of using Conditional Areas as the basis for the inspection strategy is that it not only allows the structure to be assessed by area, it requires the mold inspector to assess each area separately. Both the IAQA Body of Knowledge and IICRC S520- 2015 state that an assessment should be performed when mold is present or suspected of being present. An assessment requires the assessor to differentiate between normal and contaminated indoor spaces. For example, the objectives of an assessment may include identifying (1) building-related contamination, (2) the condition of contents, and/or (3) occupant exposure potential; all of which are expected to vary with Condition. Stratifying interior spaces by Condition may focus the inspection, suggesting the objectives that are appropriate for each Conditional Area. Third, the inspection strategy not only provides the basis for the remediation plan; but it also provides the basis for the sampling plan and the data-interpretation plan. It is often not practical for the mold inspector to classify an entire structure as a single Condition, since Condition frequently varies from area to area. Viewing the structure as a whole is neither efficient for the IEP, the remediation contractor, nor the client. Basing the inspection on Conditional Areas forces the IEP to differentiate between normal and contaminated areas, and to identify the Condition of each area in the structure. Fourth, samples collected in the same Conditional Area may be combined and averaged. For example, if the three second-floor bedrooms are Condition 1, then a separate 5-minute airborne sample may be collected in each bedroom; or, a single composite sample may be collected – using a single cassette to collect a 5-minute sample in each bedroom (composite sample).

Article Source: http://www.iaqa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Technical-Feature-2-Winter-2019-.pdf

Lawmakers blast companies overseeing military homes racked by toxic dangers

Military families described living in decrepit, dangerous and inescapable homes at a Wednesday hearing, where lawmakers expressed shock over the allegations of slum-like conditions of privately managed housing.

The emotional testimonies came on the same day as the release of a survey that painted a grim picture of living conditions at U.S. bases for thousands of families, including black mold, lead, infestations of vermin, flooding, radon and faulty wiring.

Families said their concerns have been met with resistance, and in some cases threats from property management companies and commanders to silence them.

Crystal Cornwall, a Marine Corps spouse, told lawmakers about termites falling though light fixtures at an air base in Mississippi and mice chewing through infant pacifiers at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

“I wouldn’t recommend my own children join the service, and my husband has been a Marine for 12 years,” she said.

Some families said their children have been sickened by toxic living conditions but felt they had few options to hold companies or commanders accountable.Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.), a former Air Force pilot, described the stories as “disgusting” and infuriating.

“They left you hanging. They put you in harm’s way,” McSally told a panel of three military spouses, describing the companies. “Somehow we need the chain of command . . . to be able to poke their finger to poke in the chest of these companies to say ‘fix it now, or you’re done.’ ”

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) said he was left baffled during opening remarks in the Senate Armed Services subcommittee hering. “It gets harder and harder to shock me,” he said. “This is shocking.”

During the hearing, the executives struck a conciliatory tone.

“The situation is clearly unacceptable,” said Denis Hickey, the chief executive of Americas Lendlease Corporation said. Christopher Williams, the president of Balfour Beatty Communities, said: “When we fall short, we try to make it right.”

The panel of military spouses told lawmakers they would like options to hold companies to account, like withholding housing stipend payments until work orders were complete and satisfactory. In a surprising move, the panel of executives told lawmakers they would have few problems with that idea.

In a joint statement, Army Secretary Mark T. Esper and Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley said they were “deeply troubled” by reports of unsafe housing.

“We will hold our chain of command and private contractors accountable to ensure they are meeting their obligations to provide safe, high-quality family housing,” they said.

Article Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/national-security/2019/02/13/survey-military-families-paints-slum-like-picture-housing-bases-across-country/?noredirect=on

Madison Taylor Indoor Environmental, the Leading Mold Company in DC, Announces Recertification

Madison Taylor Indoor Environmental the largest indoor environmental company on the East Coast announces the completion of continued educational requirements for the DC Licensed Mold Remediator and the DC Licensed Mold Assessor Programs.

The District of Columbia’s Air Quality Amendment Act of 2014 protects tenants by mandating proper testing and remediation procedures when mold becomes a concern. The law requires that tenants must first notify the landlord in writing about mold issues in the home. The landlord must respond within seven days and has 30 days to repair the problem. Mold contamination greater than 10 square feet requires a DOEE licensed mold professional to assess (evaluate) and/or remediate (fix) the problem. Contamination from mold less than 10 square feet can be addressed by a non-licensed individual.

John Taylor, the owner of Madison Taylor Indoor Environmental, licensed mold inspector and certified indoor environmentalist says, “DC got their mold law right. DC’s Air Quality Amendment Act is a simple law that protects tenants from mold problems and gives effective guidance to landlords. As a company we have seen the direct impact to improving home and health since the passing of this law.” This law is streamlined and does not hinder clients from getting competitive and economical pricing for services, which some laws across the country do. Qualified mold assessors and mold remediation companies can efficiently become certified by DC and follow normal industry standards without needless additional convoluted processes which is beneficial for consumers.

John Taylor added, “Before the law was put into effect mold in DC rental homes and apartment buildings was quickly becoming a considerable problem for tenants and homeowners. Countless DC landlords improperly treated, cleaned, and remediated serious mold conditions, exposing tenants to contaminated indoor air quality, sometimes causing the occupants significant illness.”

Madison Taylor Indoor Environmental is the leading indoor air quality firm in Virginia, Maryland, and DC, providing mold testing and remediation services to residential and commercial clients all throughout the DMV. John Taylor expressed how rewarding it is owning a mold testing and mold remediation company. “It’s is what I call a happy business. Every day we at Madison Taylor Indoor Environmental are able to aid people in finding and fixing indoor air quality conditions. We have helped thousands of clients, with the testing and remediation of mold in hospitals, schools, government facilities, and homes, aiding building owners, homeowners and tenants in solving mold problems for over 18 years.”

If you have questions about mold or other indoor air quality concerns, contact:

John K. Taylor

Madison Taylor Inc.

Office: 877-932-4652

Cell: 703-932-6134

Email: john@madisontaylorservices.com

www.madisontaylorenvironmental.com

Article Source : https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/madison-taylor-indoor-environmental-the-leading-mold-company-in-dc-announces-recertification-300788725.html