We came across a sad story this week that we sincerely wish had been handled differently. But there is still time…for some.

Nine employees of the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office are suing the County, the owners of the building they worked in and the cleaning company contracted to get rid of mold that was making them sick at work. The employees feel that the defendants are responsible for their health problems and were negligent in remediating a mold problem which started with a burst pipe and flood that occurred in 2002.

“The Annex” 
was used by the Monterey County District Attorney’s Fraud Investigation Unit. The people who worked and visited the building had long been complaining of “musty, offensive, foul” odor in the building. Tests for mold spores were performed but the only recommendations were that the employees unclutter their desks. A health inspector could smell the mold, but reported, “Mold is everywhere outside and inside homes and buildings,” and blamed dust and poor circulation.

The people who worked in the building suffered from various ailments including “shortness of breath, recurring headaches, itchy eyes and bloody noses over several years” according to the Monterey County Weekly. Even more tragically, one employee who was being treated for cancer suffered more than others because of her compromised immune system from chemotherapy treatments. Sadly, Beverly Forrest is suffering complications from her treatment and may not survive to the conclusion of the lawsuit.

It is very important for landlords, employers and contractors to take flood damage seriously when it occurs. Mold is indeed everywhere and will take hold with the least opportunity. Any moisture from a leak, flood or lack of maintenance can become a health problem for sensitive individuals extremely quickly and ongoing exposure to high levels of mold spores can affect anyone’s health.

Alliance Environmental Group offers mold removal and remediation services as well as structural drying and pasteurization with high temperatures. Thermapureheat kills all mold as well as drying out wet building materials. It penetrates walls and floors, ensuring your peace of mind as well as your health. Contact us anywhere in California for fast, professional service.

Wendy Stackhouse is the Online Community Manager and Blogger for Alliance Environmental Group and AirTek. We welcome your comments and questions! For more news and tips or talk to our experts, Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter! For updates on indoor air challenges, Like us at AirTek on Facebook!