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Mold. Black mold. Stachybotrys.

We hear about mold conditions all too often in numerous news articles and professional journals which also discuss the often-debilitating effects of mold on the health of the individual and buildings. And there is plenty reason why mold has become an increasing concern. People with allergies or other compromising respiratory conditions may be more sensitive to mold. Mold sensitivities and symptoms vary widely from individual to individual. Those who are immunocompromised, whether from a specific treatment for cancer, recent organ or stem cell transplant, or another underlying illness or disease, are at the highest risk of getting a fungal infection (or mold infection) from exposure to molds. Proper mold remediation techniques following specific mold removal protocols is critical to reduce the harmful health risks.

Types of Mold

There are certain types of mold that are more harmful than others. We all inhale some molds every day in the outdoors and in our own homes. Other molds are less common, such as Stachybotrys, often called “black mold.” You will most commonly find black mold growing on wet building materials such as wood and drywall. Mold grows from events like water damage left unattended, excessive humidity, water leaks, and flooding. The pace at which mold grows can, at times, be astounding.

Black Mold in the Home

STOP was recently alerted to a home in Natick, MA that had tested positive for Stachybotrys in the basement. The bulkhead leaked during the rainy weather in the Boston Metrowest area, and the contaminated storm water caused water damage (wet carpet, carpet pad, and tack strips) that was not easily detected until the moldy smell started, and the homeowners developed respiratory symptoms typical for mold exposure.

Upon arrival to perform mold remediation, STOP immediately contained the contaminated area and established a system so the mold spores and other particles in the air were being heavily filtered prior to starting the work. The STOP technicians put on personal safety gear to protect themselves from mold spores and assessed the area to determine the location of the black mold. Once the wet carpet was pulled back, the green-black mold growth was very obvious on the wet tack strips. Mold remediation was initiated which not only includes removing the visible mold, but also decontaminating the entire room. Notably, even though the visible mold growth was limited to the tack strips under the carpet in one area of the room, the indoor air quality test showed high levels of airborne “black mold” in the area of the room opposite the actual mold.

STOP followed the highest standard protocols for mold remediation. As recommended by STOP, the homeowners had a follow-up test in the same area by an independent mold inspector which resulted in zero Stachybotrys spores in the environment. The black mold was eliminated from the area and the air.

Remember, mold can start impacting the health of people around the house before it becomes visible.

Call STOP Metrowest at 508-753-3780 if you suspect mold in your home and want the mold removed by an IICRC Certified company with specific certification in microbial (e.g. mold) remediation.