Hospital mould removal

Our recent mould removal project took us to a large newly build hospital in the Midlands area. The hospital building project was very close to completion when one of the administrative buildings developed serious mould contamination problem. I was invited to investigate firstly the roof cause of the mound problem and secondly to suggest the best remedial approach in this sensitive environment.

Mould in the wall cavity

Mould in the wall cavity

During inspection it was quickly discovered that almost all internal plywood surfaces were contaminated by mould to some degree. The mould infestation was particularly confined to the internal parts of the structure and in particular in wall and ceiling voids. Quick testing showed that dominant mould contaminating the wall surfaces was Penicillium.

mould-in-wall-cavity-x

Hidden mould in the wall and ceiling cavitites

This particular Penicillium was a quick growing species considered slightly dry tolerant meaning that it did not require a lot of moisture to grow. The building suffered from elevated humidity mainly due to water release from the new building materials. The building has been shut from the outside environment before it had a chance to dry to a safe level. Water vapour in the air was encountering the cold plywood surfaces elevated the moisture content of the surface layer which got subsequently contaminated by Penicillium mould.

Due to the fact that we were working in a highly sensitive environment we have divided the project into two parts. Firstly we removed the mould from wall cavities under semi-controlled conditions utilising specialist air filtration equipment and surface and air sterilisation methods. Fortunately there were not many internal wall cavity spaces fitted with plywood so we were able to accomplish this part of the mould removal project in two days.

The second stage of the mould removal project was focussed onto decontamination of the loft areas. Due to scale and complexity of access the project took over 12 days to complete. We have employed full area containment method with full scale active air management system. The indoor air was constantly filtrated to prevent accidental release of mould spores to other areas of the hospital and also to prevent ourselves being exposed to the mould. We have fully removed mould and treated all the affected surfaces and sterilised the air within the affected areas.

mould-removal-in-roof-x

Mould removal from the roof area

Our client was particularly satisfied with the resulting effect and the thoroughness and management of the projects. In this particular case the protection of hospital patient and also the main building contractor’s employees was of utmost importance. Our projects range from small domestic mould removal to large scale operation like this but one thing they have in common is that they are all different and require slightly different method of dealing with the contamination. Other thing I like to stress in any mould removal project is that identification and resolution of the root cause if essential to achieve permanent solution.

mould-removal

Final result after mould decontamination

By Tomas Gabor

Link through to Sysco - Nationwide specialists in hazard exposure monitoring
Hi, I have been working in my job as an Indoor Air Quality Investigator for a number of years and decided to share my experience with you. You can find lot of related information on my website toxic black mould
Leave a comment
  • ray

    i hope i am not going to be treated at this hospital, bad enough as it is ;-(

    Reply
    August 11, 2013, 10:51 am permalink
    • Tomas

      Dont you worry Ray. the hospital took good care to manage the contamiantion , we did a pretty god job to sanitase the areas. and beside the affected areas were well away from any sensitive areas. It was just a construction blunder which was quickly rectified, nothing to worry about to much.

      Reply
      December 28, 2013, 1:32 pm permalink
  • peter.K

    this looks like n interesting project to be involved in, lot of work though 🙂

    Reply
    November 26, 2013, 1:31 pm permalink
  • Moncler dunjacka

    Very good article. I absolutely love this site!

    Reply
    November 29, 2013, 7:12 pm permalink
  • Anonymous

    Is green mold penicillium an how ba is it?

    Reply
    December 11, 2013, 4:43 pm permalink
    • Tomas

      Typically yes, but not neccesarilly. Penicillium is usually one of the first colonisers of water damaged surfaces and therefore if you just had a leak and it hasn been there too long than it is quite likely to be penicillium. However the color is nothing to go by. All moulds are prety much black, braown-is or green-is on the building materials and there is approximately 100 typicla indoor moulds and well over 50 000 environmental molds. So as you cna see coulour can not be used by itself for mould identification. Minimum a look though a microscope s required to be able to identidy a genus of a mould.

      For your seocnd question how bad it is it depends of these factos
      * your personal sensitivity
      * preexisting health conditions
      * the amount of mould you are exposed to
      * and the duration of the mould exposue

      Reply
      December 28, 2013, 1:50 pm permalink
  • Mike.wood

    look like a realy job :-), something to worry about

    Reply
    December 27, 2013, 11:47 am permalink
  • Tomas

    Alice, there is no specific standard or regulation dealing with issues like this, comon sence prevails. The mould clenaing was carried out to a level where no mould was present on the building materials , as it would be expected under normal conditions. The remocla was carried out under controlled condition to prevent mould spore contamiantion of other areas. we have also carried out post remediation compliance testing to certify the clean and to ensure that mould spores are at normal levels.

    Reply
    December 28, 2013, 1:35 pm permalink
  • Chris

    Which hospital was this?

    Reply
    January 12, 2014, 4:31 am permalink
    • Tomas

      Sorry , not telling, and it doesn’t matter anyway, all cleated and safe.

      Reply
      January 31, 2014, 2:34 pm permalink