Mold in the News: Issue 68

Mold in the News: Issue 68
At Got Mold? our goal is to keep our followers aware of mould related news stories. Each day, we scour the internet looking for relevant information. Here are 13 stories we thought may interest you!
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Citi Hurricane Sandy Mold Insurance Risk: Citi strategist Jeffrey Berenbaum and his team, in their latest weekly client report, look at the risks posed to commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) by the destruction of Hurricane Sandy. Citi, like most other research shops that have weighed in on Sandy’s impact on CMBS, says it’s both (a) too early to tell the specific implications of the hurricane and (b) it’s likely not going to have any market-wide effect. However, one of the idiosyncratic risks that properties flooded by Sandy could face, according to Berenbaum, is mold damage – and a lack of mold insurance to cover it.
Council ordered to pay compensation in mould case: A London Council has been ordered to pay £4,000 in compensation to a mother of three who was forced to abandon her bedroom because of mould in her flat. Lambeth Council pleaded guilty to criminal charges at Camberwell Green Magistrates Court after the tenant, identified as Ms Murphy, brought the case when her complaints about her flat were not resolved. Ms Murphy’s flat began suffering from mould in winter 2009, a few months after she moved in. The council painted over the mould in April 2011 but the problem was not adequately dealt with. The tenant’s solicitors, Anthony Gold, obtained an environmental health report that found that Ms Murphy’s ceiling was uninsulated and collecting water which ran down the walls creating mould growth. Exposure to mould can result in sever respiratory illness, including pneumonia, bronchitis and asthma.
After Hurricane Sandy: Mold Can Be a Threat to Your Home: In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, homes, offices, and other enclosed areas that were moist or flooded may harboring bacteria and mold. Health officials say fast action can prevent mold growth. The most common problems for people are allergies (such as hay fever, asthma, or irritation of the eyes, nose, throat or lungs) from breathing mold spores. Indoor mold growth does not affect everyone, but people who are sensitive to molds should avoid areas with active mold growth until they can be cleaned or removed.
Drying laundry indoors is bad for your health – especially if you have asthma and allergies: As winter approaches many people take to drying their clothes indoors near radiators, rather than risk hanging them outside in inclement weather. But the action could be causing health problems, particularly to those prone to asthma, hay fever and other allergies, say researchers. A study carried out by the Mackintosh School of Architecture, based in Glasgow, found many homes had too much moisture indoors and up to 30 per cent of this was caused by laundry.
Baby in mouldy flat rushed to hospital: A mum living in a mouldy flat said her “worst nightmare came true” after she woke up to find her ten-month-old barely breathing. Chelsie Lankston, of Thirsk Road, Borehamwood, noticed her son Terry’s breathing was getting shallower as he slept in their mouldy and damp bedroom last night. The 24-year-old and her partner, Daniel Mason, rushed the infant to hospital where he was diagnosed with bronchitis and given an oxygen mask. The couple have been fighting housing association Affinity Sutton to clear up the mould because their son was constantly struck down with breathing difficulties.
How dangerous is mold in your home?: Anecdotes abound on the affects of “toxic” mold on human health. Asthma and respiratory illness, infections, even memory loss and brain damage have been attributed to this organism that is found indoors and out, and thrives in warm, moist conditions. But how dangerous is mold really? And what should you do if you suspect that household mold is making you sick? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that most people tolerate normal levels of mold just fine. However, high levels of mold indoors can create symptoms similar to an allergic reaction, including a stuffy nose, wheezing, skin irritation or eye irritation. Mold can also exacerbate asthma.
Healthcare Renovations Must Consider Mold, Legionella Risks: Healthcare facilities need to take a proactive approach and assess potential risks posed by mold and legionella before starting any repair, renovation or construction project, according to an environmental advisory released by the ACE Group. “Legionella and Mold: Construction and Renovation Risks at Healthcare Facilities” examines the potential risks of pollutants, such as the bacteria that causes the potentially fatal Legionnaires’ disease, and explores ways to mitigate them during construction or renovation.
Mum says mouldy home made children ill: A FAMILY say they have been forced to flee their Burnley home over a potentially harmful mould problem. Emma Foster (35) and her six children quit the Calico-owned house in Kinross Street after finding black and green mould throughout the property. She claims the health of her children has suffered since moving in and believes the mould is to blame. She said: “When you are in here you cannot breath properly. I have had so many health issues since living in the house. I have researched black mould. It can cause respiratory problems. “In some cases it can be very serious – especially as my son Scott has neutropenia of childhood. His immune system just completely disappears so he is open to catching anything.
Dirty pacifiers hide mold, bacteria: While pacifiers can offer solace to a crying infant, new research suggests they can also provide babies with bacteria. “The pacifier is a potential reservoir for germs that will make you sick,” said Dr. R. Thomas Glass of the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences. Glass and his colleagues at Oklahoma State University did a small study of 10 used infant pacifiers. They looked clean, but under a microscope they found microbial contamination: Mold and staph bacteria. “It may look solid in your hand, but when we look at it under the scanning electron microscope, it looks like a sponge,” Glass said. No studies have proven that a dirty paci can lead to actual illness, but most experts agree parents should replace them at least monthly even if they’re cleaned and sterilized after every use.
Hurricane Sandy Making People Sick? Sandy Aftermath: Illness: Hurricane Sandy not only brought devastation and physical damage to the East Coast, but in the days and weeks to come we may start seeing people developing rashes, allergies, digestive tract infections, and other illnesses due to the contaminated water and mold growing inside flooded homes and buildings. When items in homes and buildings are wet for more than two days, mold spores begin to grow and can cause unhealthy air in your home.
Mold again delays courthouse renovation: A second batch of mold has pushed the completion for an ongoing remodel of the Marathon courthouse out to early 2013, according to Monroe County Project Management Director Jerry Barnett. “We plan to have it done … by February or March. We’re hoping sooner, but I wouldn’t count on it,” he said. “The total renovation is going to be just over $1 million. All the numbers aren’t available because change orders are not all done.”
Housing association to take mould ‘very seriously’: A housing association has promised to take a mould-ridden flat “very seriously” after a baby was struck down with bronchitis. Chelsie Lankston, of Thirsk Road, Borehamwood, rushed ten-month-old Terry to hospital after he was struggling to breathe last Thursday night. The 24-year-old claims the Affinity Sutton owned flat is full of mould, and doctors suggested the bronchitis is as a result of being exposed to mouldy conditions. Ian Morrison, head of property services for the firm, said: “We understand this is a very worrying time for Miss Lankston and her family.
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Don’t let condensation get you steamed up: November is typically the time of year homes can become affected by condensation and, according to UK trade body The Property Care Association, the use of poorly considered or badly installed insulation can compound the problem. The Association says modern, open plan living – combined with greater moisture production from items such as tumble dryers and power showers – means that some homes produce more vapour than ever, and factors such as the airtight design of homes, inadequate ventilation and poor insulation are making some buildings more susceptible to the effects of excessive atmospheric moisture. This can cause condensation on or within the structure of the building. The results can be unsightly, but could also lead to decay, further reductions in thermal efficiency and mould growth.