Mold/Fungi – the unwanted free loader

Evidence of Mold
Ever notice the pink or yellow spots on the vinyl wall covering on the interior face of the wall? Pull back the vinyl and you will find black mold and mushy drywall. The pink spots are literally mold vomit. Feeding mold exudes digestive enzymes that react with the plasticizers.

Moisture and Food Source
Prolonged moisture buildup and available food sources in buildings create the ultimate environment for mold growth. The composite materials we use today have adhesives that can be digested by fungi we call molds. Mold will also digest sugars and starches in wood fiber, if the cell walls have been crushed or broken. Solid lumber has intact cell walls that cannot be penetrated by molds. Molds will grow on the surface, but the wood will retain its structural strength. Particle board, oriented-strand board (OSB), medium density fiberboard and paper-covered gypsum board, are full of adhesives, which make them good “mold chow”.

Types of Mold/Fungi
Aeroallergenic fungi such as Cladosporium. Penicillium, Aspergillus, Epicoccum, Chaetomium, Fusarium, Stachybotrys, as well as bacterial agents such as bacillus are routinely isolated in minor quantities from Florida inside air samples. Cladosporium has a low potential for causing health problems. Penicillium have been reported to be responsible for hypersensitivity pneumonitis. Aspergillus has been associated with three distinct illnesses. These include allergic broncho-pulmonary asporgillosis, pulmonary aspergilloma and invasive aspergillosis. Epicoccum is a common allergen and normally considered a contaminant. Chaetomium is occasionally implicated in cutaneous phaeohyphomycosis, but commonly considered a contaminant. Fusarium is a known agent of mycotic eye infections and occasionally involved in skin and nail infections. Stachybotrysatra may produce toxins which are present in the spores.

Remediation Methods

  • Performed by properly trained personnel equipped with respiratory protection

  • Work areas are contained to control dust and debris.

  • Negative pressurization is used within the containment area.

  • Ventilation ducts/grills in the work areas are sealed with plastic sheeting.

  • Rooms not involved in the remediation are commonly sealed off with plastic sheeting.

  • Dust suppression methods, such as misting, are utilized.

  • Contaminated materials are commonly removed from the building in sealed plastic bags.

  • Upon completion, the work areas are HEPA vacuumed and cleaned.

  • All areas are left dry and visibly free from contamination and debris.

  • Follow-up bioaerosol testing is performed to verify acceptable indoor air quality criteria.

Mr. Albers is an expert witness in a court of law, but is not an attorney. If you have legal questions related to any of these topics, please consult an Attorney.

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Florida Mold Moisture Expert Witness

Thomas G. Albers, Sr. - AIA, NCARB, RCI
Florida Expert Witness

2518 Burnsed Blvd. Ste 609
The Villages, FL 32163
(321) 356-0218 (Cell)
(352) 633 0168 (Tel)

 

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