Asbestos Dos & Donts a Saskatchewan Guideline

Asbestos. Got Mold

Asbestos can be very dangerous.

As many of our readers already know there are different levels of exposure risk when dealing with asbestos and the hazards of the removal process. Different provinces have different guidelines and regulations for the exposure levels and the practices involved in the remediation process. Some things remain the same – the do’s and don’ts listed in this blog are some of the things to always keep in mind when dealing with asbestos.
  • Do keep activities to a minimum in any areas having damaged material that may contain asbestos and take every precaution to avoid damaging asbestos material.
  •  Do have removal and major repair done by people qualified in handling asbestos. It is recommended that sampling and minor repair also be done by asbestos professionals.
  • Don’t dust, sweep, or vacuum debris that may contain asbestos.
  • Don’t saw, sand, scrape, or drill holes in asbestos materials.
  •  Don’t use abrasive pads or brushes on power strippers to strip wax from asbestos flooring. Never use a power stripper on a dry floor.
  • Don’t sand or try to level asbestos flooring or its backing. When asbestos flooring needs replacing, install new floor covering over it, if possible. If removal is an absolute necessity please call your local remediation company to examine the situation before hand so that you don’t end up with particles all over your home or worse in your lungs.
  • Don’t track material that could contain asbestos through the house. If you cannot avoid walking through the area, have it cleaned with a wet mop. If the material is from a damaged area, or if a large area must be cleaned, call an asbestos professional.
If the asbestos material is in good shape and will not be disturbed, do nothing!
If it is a problem, there are two types of corrections: repair and removal. Repair usually involves either sealing or covering asbestos material. Sealing (encapsulation) involves treating the material with a sealant that either binds the asbestos fibers together or coats the material so fibers are not released. Pipe, furnace and boiler insulation can sometimes be repaired this way. This should be done only by a professional trained to handle asbestos safely. Covering (enclosure) involves placing something over or around the material that contains asbestos to prevent release of fibers. Exposed insulated piping may be covered with a protective wrap or jacket. Removal is usually expensive method and should be the last option in most situations, because removal poses the greatest risk of fiber release. However, removal may be required when remodeling or making major changes to your home that will disturb asbestos material. Removal may be necessary if asbestos material is damaged extensively and cannot be otherwise repaired. Removal is complex and must be done only by a contractor with special training. Improper removal may actually increase the health risks to you and your family. This is why you should call a trusted contractor or remediation specialist. Make sure they are qualified to do the removal and have past experience and are certified to do the work.
If you think asbestos may be in your home, don’t panic. Usually the best thing is to leave asbestos material that is in good condition alone. Contact a specialist like got mold? to come in and do an inspection. Generally, material in good condition will not release asbestos fibers. Check material regularly if you suspect it may contain asbestos. Don’t touch it, but look for signs of wear or damage such as tears, abrasions, or water damage. Damaged material may release asbestos fibers. This is particularly true if you often disturb it by hitting, rubbing, or handling it, or if it is exposed to extreme vibration or air flow. Sometimes the best way to deal with slightly damaged material is to limit access to the area and not touch or disturb it. Discard damaged or worn asbestos gloves, stove-top pads, or ironing board covers, before disposal check with local health, environmental, or other appropriate officials to find out proper handling and disposal procedures. If asbestos material is more than slightly damaged, or if you are going to make changes in your home that might disturb it, repair or removal by a professional is needed. Before you have your house remodeled, find out whether asbestos materials are present.
Most products made today do not contain asbestos. Those few products made which still contain asbestos that could be inhaled are required to be labeled as such. However, until the 1970’s, many types of building products and insulation materials used in homes contained asbestos. Common products that might have contained asbestos in the past, and conditions which may release fibers, include:
  • Pipe wrap, coatings or blankets on hot water and steam pipes in older houses.Roofing and siding shingles made of asbestos cement.
  • Insulation in houses built between 1930 and 1950.
  • Textured paint and in patching compounds used on wall and ceiling joints. Their use was banned in 1977.
  • Artificial ashes and embers used in gas-fired fireplaces.
  • Older products such as stove-top pads.
  • Walls and floors around wood burning stoves — these may be protected with asbestos paper, mill board, or cement sheets.
  •  Some vinyl floor tiles and the backing on vinyl sheet flooring and adhesives.
  • Insulation on oil or coal furnaces and door gaskets
For more information for Saskatchewan guidelines and for more information on asbestos abatement please check out more of our blogs on got mold? we are here to educate the public about awareness. If you have any questions call today!

Source for information: Saskatchewan Federation of Labor 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!
Thanksgiving is a time to spend with family and friends. Got Mold? is grateful to our staff, vendors, and customers. We wish them all the best on this Thanksgiving Day.
Feeling grateful or appreciative of someone or something in your life actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value into your life. -Northrup Christiane-
We can always find something to be thankful for, and there may be reasons why we ought to be thankful for even those dispensations which appear dark and frowning. -Albert Barnes-
Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving comes to us out of the prehistoric dimness, universal to all ages and all faiths. At whatever straws we must grasp, there is always a time for gratitude and new beginnings. -J. Robert Moskin-
A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all other virtues. -Cicero-

Got Mold? Cares About You and Your Pets

Got Mold? Cares About You and Your Pets
July was a busy month because of all the flood restoration work our staff was doing to help folks get back to their normal daily routines in a healthy environment.
Our Senior Project Manager, Chris Mysorek, takes pride in his work, ensuring that our flood restoration, mold remediation, and asbestos abatement teams stay organized and meet our operational standards and safety requirements.
A pet lover, when Chris learned that a cat was stuck and needed help, he decided to rescue the cat, with the help of some friends and family. Good job Chris! 🙂
Got Mold? Cares About You and Your Pets, mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

Chris set up his ladder with a spotter at the bottom for safety.

Got Mold? Cares About You and Your Pets, mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

Cat rescue in progress.

Got Mold? Cares About You and Your Pets, mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

Happy cat, free to roam after rescue…thanks to Got Mold? 🙂

Important Post-Flooding Advice To Avoid Health Hazards

Important Post-Flooding Advice To Avoid Health Hazards
We need water to live, it brings us life. At the same time, water can be a destructive force which is a particular concern during times of flooding.
More than two weeks has past since the flooding began in Regina, Southern Saskatchewan, and parts of Alberta. Got Mold? has helped and is currently helping many flood affected residents. In the words of one of our happy customers:
I had to cut my holiday short this July (2014) because I got an emergency call that the sewage was pouring into my basement. Pouring it was because of the heavy rains in southeast Saskatchewan this summer! Well it finally stopped and I had made contact with the company Got Mold who said they would come in as soon as they can. Within a day or two my basement started to smell and look a lot better! Their staff are excellent, very professional, and able to handle these offending and hazardous materials in a very safe and sanitary manner. I would recommend Got Mold Saskatoon to anyone at any time. Thank you very much for such wonderful work. (Brenda from Regina)
The primary concern of Water Damage Restoration professionals, like Got Mold?, is not only to help bring your life back to normal, but to ensure that you stay healthy. In the areas we have surveyed and are working in, the water damage is extensive. Consequently, it is important to act quickly because mold, fungi and disease-causing bacteria thrive in water-logged environments.
There are three primary concerns caused by water damage: structural; mold and it’s impact on health; and the threat of hazardous bacteria.
1. STRUCTURAL
Indications that your home may be conducive to mold growth include the following: obvious water damage; condensation on windows; musty odors; water stains; new or increased allergy symptoms; cracked or peeling paint, loose drywall tape and/or wall paper; rusty metal (a sign of high humidity); and drawers or doors that stick.
Mold can literally eat the structure it is feeding on. In an earlier article, we mentioned that a home is an all you can eat buffet for mold because today’s building materials are the perfect food for mold: organic, dead material including wood, drywall, fabric, and paper.
In short, left unchecked, mold will degrade the structural integrity of your property and ultimately reduce its long term value if it is not dealt with.
2. HEALTH
Unfortunately, the problems caused by mold are not just cosmetic. We have written extensively on the health concerns caused by mold which are linked to Cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, Depression, Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis, Mycotoxicosis, Asthma…Mold is Scary!
According to mycotoxin expert Dr. Harriet Ammann, exposure to indoor molds can damage the systems of your body in the following ways:
  • Vascular: blood vessel fragility, hemorrhage from tissues or lungs
  • Digestive: diarrhea, vomiting, hemorrhage, liver damage, fibrosis and necrosis
  • Respiratory: trouble breathing, bleeding from lungs
  • Neurological: tremors, loss of coordination, headaches, depression, multiple sclerosis
  • Skin: rashes, burning, sloughing, photosensitivity
  • Urinary: kidney toxicity
  • Reproductive: infertility, changes in reproductive cycles
  • Immune: Immunosuppression
  • As documented by our interviews with toxic mold survivors, long term and chronic exposure to mold has caused mycotoxicosis, literally poisoning their bodies. Furthermore, as pointed out by Michael Pinto, even a little exposure to mold can cause health issues. Bottom line, mold is a serious concern and you need to be aware of this.
    Mold is not the only health consideration, the other major issue caused by flooding is the threat of…
    3. HAZARDOUS BACTERIA
    Water provides the perfect environment for harmful bacteria to multiply. When you experience water damage, the longer you wait to begin dealing with the concern, the worse it can get. The more time water sits increases the risk of bio-hazard, meaning category 1 water can turn into category 2 water and eventually category 3 water, which is the most toxic.
    ACT IMMEDIATELY!
    To prevent the onset of mold and reduce the risk of bio-hazard, you need to act fast and begin the clean up process immediately. Ideally, you should hire a PROFESSIONAL restoration contractor and not just your contractor buddy and start the claims process with your insurance company.
    During times of crisis, and particularly because restoration contractors get over-whelmed with too many requests, many victims of flooding tend to take matters into their own hands. If you are forced to do this, then here are some key tips to keep in mind while you are waiting for your restoration professional to arrive:
  • Have the area cleared by emergency workers if you have standing water in an area where fuse boxes and/or electrical circuitry is submerged before attempting to pump out the water.
  • Turn off your gas line.
  • Wear an N95 or N100 respirator mask, available at most hardware and medical supply stores.
  • Wear rubber boots and puncture-resistant gloves. Ideally, don a polypropylene coverall.
  • Be sure to carefully dry any belongings you want to try to save.
  • Items that should be thrown out, particularly if they have been underwater include the following: carpet, carpet padding, and rugs; upholstered furniture; computers, microwaves, window A/C units, or any appliances that have fans; papers and books; and food items, including canned foods if they were in contact with flood waters.
  • We strongly advise against doing your own tear out primarily because you do not want to release potentially harmful mold or asbestos in the atmosphere. This will just make the situation worse and create more costly problems, particularly if asbestos is present and not properly abated.
    When you do meet with your restoration professional don’t be afraid to ask them how they intend to deal with your water damage restoration project. Professionals will:
  • Know how to assess the category of water and extent of damage;
  • Provide you with a scope of work that will assess structural issues based on the class of damage;
  • Outline what contents need to be removed;
  • How to deal with and remove excess water;
  • Provide you with a drying and monitoring strategy using air movers and dehumidifers; and
  • A sanitizing plan to ensure a healthy environment.
  • The primary purpose of water damage restoration is to restore the property to pre-loss condition. Once all the work is complete, hire a Third Party Environmental Consultant to perform post-remediation tests, particularly, if any mold, category 2 or 3 water was present. This final step will provide further peace of mind that the water damage restoration contractor did a professional and competent job. Once a PASS is documented on the clearance test, then confidently rebuild your property during the reconstruction phase and if you so choose, hire your friend, the contractor!
    If you have questions, call us toll free, 1-888-909-6653 or use the form below.

    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You!

    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You!
    The past two weeks and two days have been busy. Just over Two weeks ago I was on a weekend family holiday at the Temple Gardens Mineral Spa in Moose Jaw.
    That same weekend, the floods hit Regina and other areas of southern Saskatchewan and our phones started ringing. During this type of emergency there is nothing we can really do to help until the water starts to recede and has stopped entering the property. Our first step is to begin to place people on a priority list and then begin contacting them to schedule on-site appointments.
    We loaded up all of our drying equipment, tools, and protective gear and went to Regina to begin the work of water damage restoration.
    I began scoping out properties on Monday, June 30th, ending my day at midnight. One home I inspected just had a $130,000 basement remodel completed on June 25th and was now full of water. I also visited homes of family in Regina and businesses of friends from my home town, Pilot Butte. I realized the situation was grim and that my teams and I had lots of work ahead of us to properly restore our customer’s lives back to normal. But that is our job, when disaster strikes, we are here to serve you.
    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You_2, mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You!

    I owe a lot of thanks to my very hard working, loyal and dedicated staff who have worked tirelessly for up to 18 hours per day to help as many people as they can. We have built great teams that work fast and do an exceptional job. The past two weeks has been so intense working long hours that our core staff from Saskatoon became physically exhausted. To ensure we can do the best job possible and prevent our Saskatoon staff from getting burnt out, we have added many local Regina residents to our water damage restoration crews.
    In any emergency, family is one of the key support mechanisms you can have. Got Mold? teams and I have been working long hours to help as many residents as we can and I feel so fortunate that I can rely on my family for support. Even though my parents are getting ready to move to Medicine Hat, they have been a tremendous source of support giving me a home to rest in at the end of the day. Most importantly, my parents have been ensuring that our teams are looked after, making lunches, picking up supplies, making sure we had water, juice, and even brought watermelon to our sites so we can stay hydrated.
    My loving wife, Shauna, and children live in Saskatoon and because of the number of calls I was getting, I have been unable to return to Saskatoon on weekends. Fortunately, they surprised me when they came to Regina for a short visit. During the early stages of the disaster, we were housing our Saskatoon teams in Regina hotels, but to ensure a higher level of comfort for our hard working staff, we rented a furnished house which Shauna and her sister stocked up with groceries and other essentials to make their stay comfortable.
    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You_3, mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You!

    To ensure that we can meet the needs of as many residents as we can, Got Mold? has been working on bringing in other teams. First, we have already begun working with an experienced restoration contractor who did a lot of work in Calgary and High River during the 2013 Alberta floods. Second, we have asked our Calgary operation to send a team to begin taking on projects. Finally, we have been networking aggressively on LinkedIn to find other restoration contractors that want to travel to Regina and help out. Our objective is to ensure that everyone who needs help gets it.
    With any flood situation, time is critical because mold only needs 24 to 48 hours to begin growing. Consequently, every project we go to requires our workers to wear Respirators with Organic Vapour and HEPA filters to prevent mold and mycotoxins from getting in their lungs and compromising their health. In addition, We are using HEPA air filtration devices, containments and all the proper controls because we are encountering mold on most job sites. We are also advising our clients to monitor their health because we know that mold causes respiratory and other health issues. As a final precaution, we have also been asking our clients to avoid doing their own basement tear outs because of the concerns caused by mold and asbestos. Asbestos is a huge concern and several of our projects are currently on hold because we are waiting for results from the lab that samples were sent to.
    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You_4,mould removal, mold removal, asbestos abatement, asbestos removal, flood, fire, flood restoration, fire restoration, dry ice blasting, dry ice cleaning, black mold, black mould, saskatoon, regina, yorkton, calgary, high river, Saskatchewan, Alberta

    When Disaster Strikes We Are Ready to Serve You!

    We are professionals, here to protect your health and help restore your life to normal. When Disaster Strikes We are Ready to Serve You!
    If you have questions, call us toll free, 1-888-909-6653 or use the form below.