Friday, 8 February 2008

Aspergillus contamination of buildings - no small problem

Moldy wall - Aspergillus Website
This news story is of the rehabilitation of a 300 bed hospital in Canada (The Honore-Mercier Hospital in Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec). The hospital had to be closed and completely gutted in 2003 following discovery of widespread aspergillus growing in its walls!!!

The mention of aspergillus growing like 'mildew' suggests that the problem was uncontrolled damp and humidity with condensation on walls thrown in for good measure. Aspergillus, like most fungi, needs moisture above all else to grow in this way.

This mouldy mess was cleaned up professionally and expensively, but what does a private householder do?
I recently contacted the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in USA for details on how a householder would go about getting a mouldy house diagnoses and treated and got the followign answer:

There is no list of approved mold remediation companies endorsed by the
USEPA. EPA has a published guideline titled "Mold Remediation in
Schools and Commercial Buildings" and recommends that when outsourcing
mold remediation work to "make sure they have experience cleaning up
mold, check their references, and have them follow the recommendations
presented in this document, the guidelines of the American Conference
of Government Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) (see Resources List),
and/or guidelines from other professional organizations."

You can access the "Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial
Buildlings" on the EPA website at

The IICRC and the Association of Specialists in Cleaning and
Restoration (ASCR) are two associations of cleaning and restoration
professionals that can help to provide referrals to experienced

I thought that link above was good for people within and outside the US.
I am still looking for help in the UK - watch this space!

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