Presented to the
Greater Houston
Industrial Hygiene
Council
Sick Building – Home
Syndrome
I smell something and I want it
tested.
I have been sick for a long time
and believe it is something in the
indoor air.
Pe...
Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) is a
term used to describe
Certain health effects peopleCertain health effects people
experie...
Symptoms
 Eye, Nose, Throat irritationEye, Nose, Throat irritation
 Dry CoughDry Cough
 DizzinessDizziness
 NauseaNaus...
Studies
The World Health Organization estimatesThe World Health Organization estimates
that up to 30% of office buildingst...
What should we be concerned
about?
Everything and Anything until weEverything and Anything until we
can find and eliminate...
What should we do?
Ask a million questionsAsk a million questions
Collect Data to identify issuesCollect Data to identify ...
Everything and Anything
so lets start out with
Lead
• Paint inside/outside homes & buildings prior toPaint inside/outside homes & buildings prior to
19781978
• Soil from...
Asbestos from 1935 – 1970 applied extensively to
buildings and homes
Spray on insulationSpray on insulation
Floor and roof...
Formaldehyde
Commonly found in man made products – usedCommonly found in man made products – used
in manufacturing process...
Legionella
• First discovered in 1976 following aFirst discovered in 1976 following a
pneumonia outbreak at the Convention...
Cleaning Chemicals, Storage & Everyday Use
Voc’s from cleanersVoc’s from cleaners
DisinfectantsDisinfectants
Air Freshener...
Computers, Printers, Office Supplies
• OzoneOzone
• VOC’sVOC’s
• Carbon black particulatesCarbon black particulates
• Elec...
Inhabitants
• SmokersSmokers
• Communicable diseases – someone as simpleCommunicable diseases – someone as simple
as havin...
Bathrooms – Locker Rooms
• VOC’s from air freshenersVOC’s from air fresheners
• Personal products – perfumes – soaps - deo...
Indoor Plants
• Insects, insect fragments and allergensInsects, insect fragments and allergens
• Pollens and allergensPoll...
Exterior structure
• Poor drainage, grading, wicking, standing waterPoor drainage, grading, wicking, standing water
• Exte...
Chimneys & Exhaust Vents
• Improper combustionImproper combustion
• Down drafting of fumesDown drafting of fumes
• Imprope...
• VOC’s from stored chemicalsVOC’s from stored chemicals
• Forklift diesel particulate matter, carbon monoxide,Forklift di...
• VOC’s from stored cleaning chemicalsVOC’s from stored cleaning chemicals
• Cooking odorsCooking odors
• Poor ventilation...
• VOC’s from stored chemicalsVOC’s from stored chemicals
• Degreasing, milling, cutting, welding operations –Degreasing, m...
• Asbestos floor tilesAsbestos floor tiles
• VOCs from carpeting and cement paint & stainsVOCs from carpeting and cement p...
• Asbestos & vermiculiteAsbestos & vermiculite
• Dead ends on plumbing or ductworkDead ends on plumbing or ductwork
• Leak...
Ask Questions, Ask Questions,
Ask Questions
Data Drives Your Program
Presented by
Robert J Reda CIH, CSP, MAC
President
Ro...
Sick Building - Home Syndrome: Presented to the Greater Houston Industrial Hygiene Council
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Sick Building - Home Syndrome: Presented to the Greater Houston Industrial Hygiene Council

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Presentation made by Robert J Reda CIH, CSP, MAC to the Greater Houston Industrial Hygiene Council. Robert J Reda & Associates LLC provides professional consulting services in Safety, Industrial Hygiene, and Environmental including mold inspections and testing services in Houston, TX.

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Sick Building - Home Syndrome: Presented to the Greater Houston Industrial Hygiene Council

  1. 1. Presented to the Greater Houston Industrial Hygiene Council Sick Building – Home Syndrome
  2. 2. I smell something and I want it tested. I have been sick for a long time and believe it is something in the indoor air. People are getting sick and we want the indoor air tested.
  3. 3. Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) is a term used to describe Certain health effects peopleCertain health effects people experience that may be related to poorexperience that may be related to poor air in buildings.air in buildings. The problem may be localized, forThe problem may be localized, for example - employees in only oneexample - employees in only one section of the building,section of the building, The problem is widespread andThe problem is widespread and experienced throughout the building.experienced throughout the building.
  4. 4. Symptoms  Eye, Nose, Throat irritationEye, Nose, Throat irritation  Dry CoughDry Cough  DizzinessDizziness  NauseaNausea  Itchy SkinItchy Skin  Difficulty concentratingDifficulty concentrating  Experience sensitivity to odorsExperience sensitivity to odors  FatigueFatigue  HeadachesHeadaches
  5. 5. Studies The World Health Organization estimatesThe World Health Organization estimates that up to 30% of office buildingsthat up to 30% of office buildings worldwide have significant indoor airworldwide have significant indoor air quality problems.quality problems. The EPA in a 1995 study found that aboutThe EPA in a 1995 study found that about 50% of schools in the US had poor50% of schools in the US had poor ventilation and sources of pollution insideventilation and sources of pollution inside the buildings.the buildings.
  6. 6. What should we be concerned about? Everything and Anything until weEverything and Anything until we can find and eliminate the potentialcan find and eliminate the potential for risk.for risk.
  7. 7. What should we do? Ask a million questionsAsk a million questions Collect Data to identify issuesCollect Data to identify issues Inspect to find answersInspect to find answers Make recommendationsMake recommendations Solve the problemSolve the problem
  8. 8. Everything and Anything so lets start out with
  9. 9. Lead • Paint inside/outside homes & buildings prior toPaint inside/outside homes & buildings prior to 19781978 • Soil from previous paint or leaded gas from carsSoil from previous paint or leaded gas from cars • Dust from deteriorating paint or tracked in fromDust from deteriorating paint or tracked in from the outsidethe outside • Drinking water – plumbing with lead or lead solderDrinking water – plumbing with lead or lead solder • Bringing it home from the job - clothes – bootsBringing it home from the job - clothes – boots • Painted toys or furniture (mini-blinds)Painted toys or furniture (mini-blinds) • Food and liquids – stored in lead crystal or leadFood and liquids – stored in lead crystal or lead glazed pottery or porcelainglazed pottery or porcelain • Hobbies – stained glass-pottery-refinishingHobbies – stained glass-pottery-refinishing furniturefurniture • Folk Remedies that contain lead – Greta – AzarconFolk Remedies that contain lead – Greta – Azarcon
  10. 10. Asbestos from 1935 – 1970 applied extensively to buildings and homes Spray on insulationSpray on insulation Floor and roof feltFloor and roof felt Pipe wrapPipe wrap Millboard or roll boardMillboard or roll board Cooling tower fill –exterior boardCooling tower fill –exterior board Auto brakes-mufflers-transmission disks-packings- gasketsAuto brakes-mufflers-transmission disks-packings- gaskets Insulation on wires or appliancesInsulation on wires or appliances Asbestos cement pipesAsbestos cement pipes Floor tile, sealants, adhesives, mastics, paintsFloor tile, sealants, adhesives, mastics, paints Textiles – curtains-blankets-mattresses-gloves-hatsTextiles – curtains-blankets-mattresses-gloves-hats Road surfacing and pavementRoad surfacing and pavement Shotgun shell base wadsShotgun shell base wads
  11. 11. Formaldehyde Commonly found in man made products – usedCommonly found in man made products – used in manufacturing processes and is a keyin manufacturing processes and is a key ingredient in building supplies & furnishingsingredient in building supplies & furnishings Plywood, particle board, insulation, cleaners,Plywood, particle board, insulation, cleaners, fabrics, carpeting, and furniturefabrics, carpeting, and furniture Automobile exhaustAutomobile exhaust Tobacco smokeTobacco smoke Electrical issues that heat upElectrical issues that heat up
  12. 12. Legionella • First discovered in 1976 following aFirst discovered in 1976 following a pneumonia outbreak at the Convention ofpneumonia outbreak at the Convention of American Legion in PhiladelphiaAmerican Legion in Philadelphia • Transmitted from environment to humansTransmitted from environment to humans • No evidence of human to human or animalNo evidence of human to human or animal to human transmission of these bacteriato human transmission of these bacteria • Potable water is the most important sourcePotable water is the most important source of Legionellaof Legionella • Inhaled contaminated aerosols – FromInhaled contaminated aerosols – From Where?Where?
  13. 13. Cleaning Chemicals, Storage & Everyday Use Voc’s from cleanersVoc’s from cleaners DisinfectantsDisinfectants Air FreshenersAir Fresheners Paints & SolventsPaints & Solvents HerbicidesHerbicides PesticidesPesticides FungicidesFungicides
  14. 14. Computers, Printers, Office Supplies • OzoneOzone • VOC’sVOC’s • Carbon black particulatesCarbon black particulates • Electromagnetic fieldsElectromagnetic fields • Worker Ergonomics – lighting – workWorker Ergonomics – lighting – work positions – sitting positions – tablespositions – sitting positions – tables • Felt tip pensFelt tip pens • Newspaper inkNewspaper ink • Adhesive tapeAdhesive tape
  15. 15. Inhabitants • SmokersSmokers • Communicable diseases – someone as simpleCommunicable diseases – someone as simple as having a cold - flueas having a cold - flue • Skin fragmentsSkin fragments • Body perfumes & colognesBody perfumes & colognes • Nail Polish removerNail Polish remover • Hair SprayHair Spray • Body odorsBody odors • Dust mites, ticks, fleasDust mites, ticks, fleas • Carbon Dioxide - breathingCarbon Dioxide - breathing
  16. 16. Bathrooms – Locker Rooms • VOC’s from air freshenersVOC’s from air fresheners • Personal products – perfumes – soaps - deodorantsPersonal products – perfumes – soaps - deodorants • Candle sootCandle soot • Leaky drains, standing water – mold – black waterLeaky drains, standing water – mold – black water and bacteriaand bacteria • RadonRadon • Lack of proper ventilationLack of proper ventilation • Sewage Gas back up – improper plumbingSewage Gas back up – improper plumbing • Legionnaires Disease from faucets, showers, & hotLegionnaires Disease from faucets, showers, & hot tubstubs
  17. 17. Indoor Plants • Insects, insect fragments and allergensInsects, insect fragments and allergens • Pollens and allergensPollens and allergens • MoldMold • Standing waterStanding water • Herbicides, insecticides, fungicidesHerbicides, insecticides, fungicides
  18. 18. Exterior structure • Poor drainage, grading, wicking, standing waterPoor drainage, grading, wicking, standing water • Exterior cracks, gaps, sealant failuresExterior cracks, gaps, sealant failures • Improper vapor barriers – vapor intrusionImproper vapor barriers – vapor intrusion • No gutters, gutter blockage, ice damsNo gutters, gutter blockage, ice dams • Tree roots causing cracked underground plumbing –Tree roots causing cracked underground plumbing – natural gas and sewagenatural gas and sewage • Exterior plants causing moisture problemsExterior plants causing moisture problems • Exterior pesticides & herbicides infiltrationExterior pesticides & herbicides infiltration • Pollen infiltrationPollen infiltration • Parking lot fuel leaks & idling vehicles VOC’s-COParking lot fuel leaks & idling vehicles VOC’s-CO • Sprinkler systems spraying on exterior wallsSprinkler systems spraying on exterior walls
  19. 19. Chimneys & Exhaust Vents • Improper combustionImproper combustion • Down drafting of fumesDown drafting of fumes • Improper chimney flashing resulting in water leaksImproper chimney flashing resulting in water leaks which results in potential mold growthwhich results in potential mold growth • Poor masonry and cracks which allow water leaksPoor masonry and cracks which allow water leaks which results in potential mold growthwhich results in potential mold growth • Animals – bats – bees – wasps - hornetsAnimals – bats – bees – wasps - hornets
  20. 20. • VOC’s from stored chemicalsVOC’s from stored chemicals • Forklift diesel particulate matter, carbon monoxide,Forklift diesel particulate matter, carbon monoxide, Nox, SoxNox, Sox • Electric forklifts – battery acid, hydrogen, lead dustElectric forklifts – battery acid, hydrogen, lead dust • Propane forklifts – aldehydes, CO, NoxPropane forklifts – aldehydes, CO, Nox • Pesticides & HerbicidesPesticides & Herbicides • Vehicle exhaust infiltrationVehicle exhaust infiltration • Off gassing of stored fuelsOff gassing of stored fuels • Trash Storage IssuesTrash Storage Issues Loading ramp
  21. 21. • VOC’s from stored cleaning chemicalsVOC’s from stored cleaning chemicals • Cooking odorsCooking odors • Poor ventilation or exhaustPoor ventilation or exhaust • Plumbing leaks – refrigerator leaks - moldPlumbing leaks – refrigerator leaks - mold • Allergens from cockroaches & rodentsAllergens from cockroaches & rodents • Poor hygiene practices – brought in from the factoryPoor hygiene practices – brought in from the factory floorfloor • Waste disposal of trash - foodWaste disposal of trash - food • Food storage practicesFood storage practices • DishwashingDishwashing Break Room - Kitchen
  22. 22. • VOC’s from stored chemicalsVOC’s from stored chemicals • Degreasing, milling, cutting, welding operations –Degreasing, milling, cutting, welding operations – chlorinated solvents, metals, fumes & oilschlorinated solvents, metals, fumes & oils • Faulty electric water heater – Legionella riskFaulty electric water heater – Legionella risk • Boiler leaks - Improper boiler ventilation &Boiler leaks - Improper boiler ventilation & combustion causing gases & particulatescombustion causing gases & particulates • Lack of and or improper air filtrationLack of and or improper air filtration • Intake vent near trash receptacle or factory/otherIntake vent near trash receptacle or factory/other exhaust systemsexhaust systems • Air exhaust vent too close to air intakeAir exhaust vent too close to air intake • Bird nestsBird nests • Ozone from UV modules in HVAC systemsOzone from UV modules in HVAC systems Facilities, Furnace area, Boiler room
  23. 23. • Asbestos floor tilesAsbestos floor tiles • VOCs from carpeting and cement paint & stainsVOCs from carpeting and cement paint & stains • Formaldehyde from off gassingFormaldehyde from off gassing • Improperly sealed concrete – vapor intrusionImproperly sealed concrete – vapor intrusion • NON HEPA vacuuming – carpet doubles its weightNON HEPA vacuuming – carpet doubles its weight in dusts, particulates, other things within 3-4 yearsin dusts, particulates, other things within 3-4 years • Potential microbial & chemical reservoirs in carpetPotential microbial & chemical reservoirs in carpet from spills of water and cleaning chemicalsfrom spills of water and cleaning chemicals Flooring and Carpeting
  24. 24. • Asbestos & vermiculiteAsbestos & vermiculite • Dead ends on plumbing or ductworkDead ends on plumbing or ductwork • Leaking pipesLeaking pipes • Improper exchange ratesImproper exchange rates • Improper negative pressurizationImproper negative pressurization • System not balanced–not properly sized-dampers closedSystem not balanced–not properly sized-dampers closed • System oversizedSystem oversized • Dust and debris from leaking ductsDust and debris from leaking ducts • Improper venting of bathroom fan into plenumImproper venting of bathroom fan into plenum • Temperature and relative humidity extremesTemperature and relative humidity extremes • Furnace – Carbon MonoxideFurnace – Carbon Monoxide Ceiling Plenum, Ductwork, HVAC Systems
  25. 25. Ask Questions, Ask Questions, Ask Questions Data Drives Your Program Presented by Robert J Reda CIH, CSP, MAC President Robert J Reda & Associates LLC 5341 Nolda St. Unit D Houston, TX 77007 Phone 281-814-7638
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