With the blink of an eye, the year has almost passed us by, as we approach the last quarter of 2021 and October brings with it quite an interesting and eventful month. With celebrations such as Oktoberfest and Halloween, we also throw the spotlight on a significant cause of Breast Cancer Awareness. October is also officially recognized as National Indoor Air Quality Awareness Month, which highlights the importance of indoor air quality and how it impacts us all.
In keeping with the importance of breathing clean air, we start this issue by acknowledging the need for a safe environment for students and teachers especially since schools have reopened for in-person learning. The Mintie Viruskiller air purification products provide the perfect solution to keep the indoor air quality in schools contaminant-free amidst the health dangers that Covid-19 and wildfire smoke present.
Just over a week ago, we marked National Mesothelioma Awareness Day. Back in 2010, September 26th was earmarked by the US Congress as a special day to raise the American public’s awareness about mesothelioma and to remind us all how important it is to protect the public and our workers from asbestos exposure. We will focus on why it makes sense to hire a professional asbestos removal company. Alliance Environmental has set the industry benchmark in the service of asbestos abatement and removal over the last quarter of a century and continues to do so.
As we have seen from the devastating fires in parts of Northern California, wildfires have continued to wreak havoc in our communities. The air quality index has reflected this, with conditions not just in the Northern part of the state but central and Southern California being affected. The wildfire smoke has traveled far and wide and dissipated into the atmosphere but not after permeating the air with poor air quality. Airtek Indoor Air Solutions is a company all too familiar with completing HVAC restoration after the wildfire smoke has taken its course and settled. The company is your go-to contractor for providing HVAC and duct cleaning services.
Unfortunately, we have seen the impact of Covid-19 and how this has gravely put a strain on our healthcare facilities. Our next topic highlights the concern of infection control in hospital facilities. Coast IAQ and Life Safety Services, a leader in the healthcare industry sector, offers the necessary preventative measures for combating infection control. Our team works throughout the healthcare facility, including the operating rooms, providing services and support to healthcare professionals that have severely strained resources in terms of ICU room capacities. Their deployment of negative air pressure rooms and ICRA barriers helps provide reassurance to not just these healthcare facilities but to patients alike.
We conclude this newsletter with a crucial issue and one that is often neglected: the danger of hazardous lead paint. Traditionally the end of October is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. We turn our attention to how to safely and correctly abate lead paint. Lead paint is an environmental concern and presents a danger to all those exposed to it, including children at home or employees in the workplace.
Enjoy the read and have an outstanding and spooktacular October!
Until our next issue, take care and stay safe!
VirusKiller – Improve Ventilation For Students And Teachers At Schools
BY MINTIE LLC.
Children spend approximately 1,300 hours a year inside United States public school buildings, adding up to 17,000 hours throughout a typical 13-year school career. With more than 48 million school-aged children and millions of teachers and staff attending these schools every year, the state of indoor air quality (IAQ) has never been more critical.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), nearly 50 percent of U.S. school buildings reported having issues with IAQ. Outdated school buildings, urban pollution, overcrowded classrooms, and toxins from school supplies and cleaning products directly impact the overall quality of air inside schools.
Suppose the severe health implications of poor IAQ exposure on students and staff isn’t enough of a wake-up call. In that case, school officials should also consider the cost implications of student and teacher absenteeism.
According to Education Data, an estimated 10.7 billion dollars are lost each year due to student absenteeism in the United States. This total does not include teacher absenteeism or the associated costs of hiring substitute teachers. When schools invest in improving IAQ, it will directly impact student and teacher health. The improvement to the IAQ will result in fewer missed days and lessening the financial burdens of student and teacher absenteeism.
Mintie, the Global Provider of Indoor Environmental Solutions, is making it easier and more cost-effective than ever to provide real-time protection for students, teachers, and staff from airborne viruses, pathogens, and allergens with VIRUSKILLER™ award-winning clean air technology is trusted in schools, medical installations, and public spaces worldwide.
While traditional air purifiers may do part of the job, many cannot decontaminate the indoor air in schools. These air purifiers provide the breeding ground for airborne viruses and bacteria to spread illness in children, teachers, and staff. The cost of hiring substitutes when teachers need to take sick leave is preventable. What is also preventable are the missed learning opportunities of absent children due to asthma, allergies, or seasonal colds and flu.
More than just an air purifier, VIRUSKILLER™ provides schools with the same kind of premium clean air solutions used in critical spaces worldwide. These air purification products bring both learners and staff the physical and mental benefits of breathing clean air.
Mintie has the perfect VIRUSKILLER™ solution for every school space, including classrooms, auditoriums, offices, libraries, lunch areas, bathrooms, locker rooms. The VIRUSKILLER products can also be used in indoor spaces where students and teachers congregate.
Discover how to make top marks for your facility with unrivaled performance against organic pathogens, viruses, bacteria, mold, and fungi – as well as allergens, irritants, smoke, and VOCs to your facility.
Request a Quote and breathe safe, clean air once more.
Five Reasons to Hire Asbestos Removal Specialists
BY ALLIANCE ENVIRONMENTAL
Did you know that products containing asbestos were being used to construct structures built before the 1980s? It was so frequently used because it doesn’t burn, making it seem like an excellent product to use in the construction of homes, school, commercial buildings, and more. Now it’s known as a mineral that is highly dangerous and can cause asbestosis. The asbestos fibers get trapped in your lungs and never leave. These fibers make it hard to breathe. In severe cases, your lungs shrink and harden and eventually stop functioning altogether. Unfortunately, once affected by asbestosis, your lungs cannot heal. Many common construction materials can contain asbestos. Suppose you suspect you have some of these materials in your home or business. In that case, it is imperative that you hire a specialist to remove it properly.
Here are five reasons you should hire a specialist for your asbestos removal.
1. They Will Determine if Asbestos Removal is Required
Many materials can contain asbestos, especially if your building is older than 40 years old. How do you know asbestos is present? A specialist in asbestos removal will be able to test the material in question and let you know if it must be removed or not. A good time to have your building or home materials tested is during a renovation or remodel. During the renovation or remodel, you may find some materials that have broken down that you suspect could contain asbestos, or there’s been an upset caused by a natural disaster. You may also want to have your building checked if it was built before 1980.
2. Asbestos removal is Dangerous
Asbestos is highly toxic. All it takes is inhaling to become very ill. It can lead to many different illnesses, including cancer. It has to be correctly disposed of to ensure that it doesn’t get into the air and potentially cause anyone to get sick. Once asbestos is disturbed, it’s easy for it to become airborne. That is why it is so important to have a specialist take care of your asbestos removal. Hiring a specialist will give you the peace of mind that anyone inhabiting the space will be safe once the asbestos is removed correctly. It will also be reassuring to know that there is no leftover asbestos in that space.
3. Specialists Have the Right Equipment for Asbestos Removal
If you’re a homeowner and you’re working on a DIY project, or even if you’re a business owner. The odds are that you do not have the proper equipment for proper asbestos removal and disposal. Trained specialists wear special protective gear and use tools that help ensure the safe and effective removal of all the asbestos in the building. They will know how to contain it and keep it from spreading to unaffected areas.
4. It Requires Skills and Training
Specialists are highly trained in asbestos removal. They know the proper procedure and have been licensed to provide this service. There is no room for error. Any mistakes can cause the asbestos fibers to spread. No one must become exposed to the fibers during removal, including the adequately equipped specialists for the job. When you hire a specialist, you know that you are getting the best service with the most up-to-date equipment and specialist that are continuously trained on the latest safety measures.
5. They Will be Responsible for Disposal
When you hire a specialist for asbestos removal, you will not have to worry about disposal. When going to all that trouble to make your space safe, you don’t want to decontaminate it during the disposal process accidentally. Your specialist will also be trained on how to dispose of the asbestos. They will be responsible for properly removing and safely disposing of any affected materials. This is the best way to ensure your home or business is safe and free of this harmful mineral.
Suppose you’re not sure whether you have asbestos in your home or business. In that case, it may be a good idea to hire a specialist in asbestos removal. If you are in the middle of a renovation project and you suspect you’ve come across asbestos materials, do the following. Give your local asbestos removal specialist a call to make sure it’s safely removed. Click here to learn more.
Restoring Indoor Air Quality after Wildfire Smoke Soot and Ash
BY AIRTEK INDOOR AIR SOLUTIONS
Wildfire season is still in full force and potentially dangerous for anyone living or working within their reach. Even buildings and structures that appear unaffected by the wildfire can be affected. With the help of the wind, the smoke, soot, and ash can travel miles and miles away – bringing over a different kind of danger. Wildfire smoke, soot, and ash contain harmful compounds that can affect one’s health. They include carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, and volatile organic compounds. These toxic gases lead to coughing, trouble breathing, stinging eyes, a scratchy throat, an asthma attack, skin irritation, and even worsened existing medical conditions. Wildfire smoke, soot, and ash may not be the actual fire, but they are things to consider.
Even if you’re miles away, the products of wildfires can threaten both the exterior and interior of a property. Ash and soot can stick to the surface, potentially damaging the paint. Running the air system can allow smoke, soot, and ash to circulate through the air ducts and ultimately through the air; everyone is breathing. If not taken care of, it will lead to more harm than good.
Airtek Indoor Air Solutions is an industry leader in commercial and residential duct cleaning, power washing, and so much more. Our team can help return your indoor air to pre-wildfire quality by cleaning your HVAC system and air ducts. Once local authorities deem it safe to be outdoors or return to your properties if evacuated, is when clean-up should begin. Removing soot and ash from the exterior of a structure can be daunting but not impossible. They can be stubborn and hard to handwash on your own.
Our team can help clean the exterior of your property with our high PSI gas or propane pressure washers. Paired with green, environmentally safe, and friendly cleaners, our team can get whatever the winds blew over from the wildfire off your exterior walls. Like the property’s exterior, ash, soot, and smoke have most likely entered your property and affected your indoor air quality. Your HVAC system and air ducts should be inspected after a wildfire. Running ash, soot, and smoke-filled air system can be harmful to a person’s health and if it is clogged, use more energy than it should be.
Our team offers complete air duct and HVAC cleaning. They will help get your air system cleaned and the occupants breathing easier.
SCHEDULE A FULL AIR SYSTEM CLEANING WITH AIRTEK INDOOR SOLUTIONS.
Infection Control in Hospitals – Negative Air Pressure Rooms and ICRA Barriers
BY COAST IAQ AND LIFE SAFETY SERVICES
At the beginning of the pandemic, little was known about the spread of COVID-19. Hospitals were in survival mode and prevented spread through detailed surface cleaning practices and PPE. Once it was discovered to be an airborne virus, hospitals became innovative with their HVAC systems. They started creating temporary negative pressure rooms, which slowly became a staple in COVID units.
Negative pressure rooms maintain lower air pressure inside the room versus outside the room. Non-contaminated “outside” air flows into the room. In contrast, the contaminated air inside the room is forced out through the negative air machine. Negative air machines come equipped with HEPA filters to clean the exhaust of any airborne contaminants before being pushed outside and away from the hospital. To preclude the spread of airborne pollutants and cross-contamination, namely, when entering and exiting the room, many systems contain a barrier enforced “anteroom.” This anteroom is an airlock space for healthcare providers to remove their PPE, shoe covers, and work clothes to avoid contaminating the occupied areas.
Anterooms are also equipped with a digital pressure monitoring system or Manometer to detect the pressured differential in the Patient Room. By doing so, adequate negative pressure is maintained at all times.
To help with ICU room capacities, Coast IAQ & Life Safety Services offers infection control services. These infection control services include setting up barriers for containment and negative air machines with HEPA filters available for purchase and rent. Coast can turn regular patient rooms into negative pressure rooms to isolate COVID patients. Creating a negative pressure room is essential for infection control because it prevents contaminated air from the room from escaping into the rest of the building. Because the pressure inside the room is lower than the air pressure outside, non-contaminated air flows into the room when a door is opened.
In contrast, the contaminated air gets filtered and pushed outdoors through the negative air machine. Being able to convert regular patient rooms that aren’t occupied gives hospitals the ability to take in more COVID patients when ICU beds have reached capacity. The Coast team seals off any vents to prevent the circulation of contaminated particulates from the room. The team sets up a negative air machine to create the negative pressure. They also seal doors with windowed magnetic zipper doors.
Lead Paint: What is it and how to Deal with It Safely?
BY ALLIANCE ENVIRONMENTAL
What do you mean by toxic lead?
Lead is a naturally occurring soft blue-greyish metal in the ground. Exposure to lead can cause neurological illnesses and damage to every organ in the body. The popularity of lead in paint comes from multiple reasons. Lead improves the color, longevity, and coverage of paint. It’s more durable, flexible, less prone to cracking, and washable than other metals.
Why was lead paint banned?
Until 1978, paints contained high lead levels because people did not know the health hazards. Like any other mineral, lead can distribute inside a person’s system and cause health defects, especially in children. Moreover, kids tend to be susceptible to hand-to-mouth activities, making them more prone to ingesting toxic lead.
Lead was widely used in toys, batteries, walls, water pipes, cosmetics, and residential paints. The government banned the consumer use of lead paint in 1978 to stop the spread. However, older homes containing lead paint and affected soil and air quality still pose a significant threat.
What are the effects of lead paint?
Older homes generally have lead-based paints. Even if it is in good condition, there’s always a risk factor involved, which means you need a professional lead abatement service.
Lead poisoning primarily comes from the dust released from deteriorating lead paint. Chipping, flaking, peeling, or chalking paint can crumble into dust, resulting in lead poisoning. When lead particles circulate in the air, it poses severe health risks, especially for pregnant women, children, and unborn babies.
If the lead paint is not chipping away and intact, it’s best to leave it undisturbed. It’s helpful to paint surfaces in good condition with non-lead paint to seal them. Hire a pro to check the severity of the problem and determine the abatement costs.
How to identify if your house contains lead-based paint?
Lead paint can be dangerous and can pose serious health risks to children and adults. First, check to see in what year the house was built. If a house was built before 1970, most likely lead-based paints were used in the making. To be sure, there are specific testing kits available online to determine whether your paint contains lead. These are unreliable as the older layers of paint can still have lead; however, it’s a helpful indicator.
Make sure to select a lead abatement certified company that has all the regulations covered. They must follow strict procedures, and the technicians should be trained for on-site work and use appropriate PPE.
As for the process, a professional crew has adequate specialized equipment to do the job. An experienced team utilizes wet sanding or wet scraping techniques to keep the area moist to reduce the amount of lead dust present in the air. Safety gear is worn at all times during the process of lead paint removal. Then, the surface is prepared for encapsulation. In the end, the house is vacuumed to remove any remaining lead dust. Finally, the remediated areas are wiped down with water. A certified contractor will recoat the affected surfaces. It’s recommended to test the house for lead-based paint once more after the remediation procedure.
Alliance Environmental is a certified lead paint removal contractor who takes great caution for the operation and its workers. Every worker has the necessary PPE (personal protective equipment) for protection, daily exposure assessments, and yearly blood monitoring for the entire crew.
We strive to offer safe removal and containment of lead dust and site decontamination. The hazardous materials are lawfully disposed of to prevent increased contamination. In addition, we take the help of negative air pressure containments to keep the job sites safe for employees.
Striving to Ensure Total Client Satisfaction
By Movie. G
Jeremy was fantastic during the initial consult and professional/upfront regarding costs before and during the process. The homeowners got sticker shock from the abatement cost, but removing hazardous material isn’t cheap. There’s no way around it. The insurance covered it, but Jeremy didn’t jack the price up when he found out about the insurance. All parties worked together to get this claim covered. My photos and his communication were good enough that the adjuster didn’t even have to send their folks out for estimates. The staff at Stanton followed through with speed and cleanliness. 4 guys showed up and were completed in about 5 hours in a 22×16 room plus an entry. They left a surface on the ceiling that was a good template for refinishing by the system—fantastic job by everyone at Alliance Environmental.