IAQ News

Developing a Successful Reopening Plan

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted our personal and professional lives in ways we may not fully realize for weeks, months, perhaps even years. As businesses start to reopen around the country, developing a successful reopening plan is critical. This requires thoughtful consideration as any plan for reopening buildings needs to put occupant safety first. There are also factors such as energy and productivity costs, and implementing new guidelines and protocols to consider. Focusing on these challenges helps building and facilities managers create a smooth transition from limited to full occupancy. Make Health & Wellness a Priority A big part of developing a successful reopening plan is to ensure the health and wellness of building occupants. This includes not just employees but also visitors to the building or campus. This requires that employees adopt new ways of communicating with each other and with visitors. Employees must also understand new safety and security measures and adjust their behaviors to accommodate them. Social distancing policies may be necessary for the short- or even long-term. Cleaning and sanitizing HVAC and other ...
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/ IAQ Learning Institute

Legionella Risks in Buildings Closed by Coronavirus

The COVID-19 pandemic forced buildings and campuses to close across the country. Proactive building managers used this time to schedule inspections, testing, preventive maintenance, and cleaning of HVAC and other systems. Many facilities, however, sat empty during this time. While building closures are an essential part of limiting the spread of the coronavirus, other health risks were elevated during this time. Including Legionella risks in buildings. This bacteria causes another type of lung infection, Legionnaires' disease. Reopening Plans Like COVID-19, Legionnaires’ disease is an assault on the respiratory system. While not as severe as the condition caused by the coronavirus, Legionnaires’ disease is a form of atypical pneumonia resulting in symptoms of fever, coughing, shortness of breath, aching muscles, and headaches. In severe cases, vomiting and diarrhea may result. Unlike COVID-19, Legionnaires’ disease does not spread through human contact, but through drinking and inhaling infected water and water vapor. As building managers plan to reopen in the coming weeks, caution is essential to any reopening strategy. The sharp decline in water use during closures results in a ...
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/ IAQ Learning Institute

Reopening Your Facility After COVID-19

As shelter-in-place orders begin to lift throughout the country, businesses are shifting their focus towards reopening. Facility managers who used the time of closure to perform preventative maintenance on HVAC and other mechanical systems are in a better position than those who did nothing. Even so, if you are a building manager, you need a plan in place for reopening your facility. This plan should address cleaning, disinfecting, testing, and treatment to ensure proper indoor air quality. Reopening Risks As buildings lay dormant for weeks, even months during the COVID-19 pandemic, indoor air quality suffers. If the proper steps were not taken when the building was shut down, and the building was not maintained during the closure, there is a higher risk to building occupants once they return. Poor IAQ can lead to Sick Building Syndrome, or SBS, which triggers allergy-like symptoms in occupants. Waterborne pathogens may also have formed in standing water during closure which can cause illness. These things impact worker health and slow productivity. There are several factors managers must consider before their buildings ...
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/ IAQ Learning Institute

Coronavirus Transmission Indoors Via Airborne Particles

It’s important to understand how aerosolized coronavirus transmission indoors impacts IAQ in buildings and what building and facilities managers can do about it. We know that the coronavirus gets spread through tiny airborne droplets of water. This happens when an infected person sneezes, coughs or even breathes. The virus also gets transmitted through contact with hard surfaces, such as door handles, light switches, and countertops, but can the coronavirus attach itself to particles already in the air? There is an increasing amount of evidence to suggest that this is the case. Aerosol Transmission of Coronavirus The coronavirus gets dispersed by mouth in droplets of water. Some of these droplets are microscopic while others can be the size of a grain of sand. Up to 30,000 particles can be cast from a single sneeze or cough. These droplets also get dispersed when we speak, talk, and breath, and they travel at speeds up to 60 miles per hour. They attach to aerosols, such as dust particles, already present in the air. If the coronavirus is transmitted by aerosols, ...
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/ Building Sciences

Coronavirus Environmental Testing Assures Safe Occupancy

Pure Air Control Services has one of the few environmental laboratories that provides Coronavirus environmental testing of surface samples utilizing RT-qPCR technology. As businesses prepare to reopen and more importantly for essential businesses that remain open, ensuring a safe environment for occupants is the number one priority. Many organizations have been taking extra measures for cleaning during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to minimize the risk. But how do they know if the cleaning protocols are effective? Especially business with confirmed cases of COVID-19? Pure Air Control Services through their Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory (EDLab) division is now offering (SARS-CoV-2) Coronavirus environmental testing on surface samples in addition to their engineered PURE-Decon building disinfection solutions. This test is crucial for surveillance and risk mitigation in all types of business, healthcare and institutional facilities. “Coronavirus environmental testing for verification and clearance is a game-changer for both the health and economic side of this pandemic,” says Alan Wozniak, President/CEO of Pure Air Control Services, Inc. “This cutting-edge technology allows us to help businesses provide an extra layer of assurance to ...
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