IICRC Proposes New IAQ Standard for Remediation Contractors — Occupational Health & Safety

IICRC Proposes New IAQ Standard for Remediation Contractors — Occupational Health & Safety

IICRC Proposes New IAQ Standard for Remediation Contractors

IICRC Proposes New IAQ Standard for Remediation Contractors

The proposed standard is intended for use by those working in the mold remediation industry.

  • By Bernard Fontaine
  • Jan 23, 2023

The Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) just released a 45-day draft review of a new S520 consensus standard for professional remediation of microbial growth. The IICRC standard is a framework to be used by indoor air quality professionals, site inspectors, technicians and remediation contractors to improve work practices and procedures within an institutional, commercial or residential structure. The information benefits facilities managers and building owners seeking to improve the quality of workmanship under their supervision.

As a member of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the IICRC issues certifications in more than 20 different fields. With nearly 49,000 certified technicians and 6,500 certified remediation firms throughout 22 countries, the IICRC membership represents wide range of different industries. It also works with many national and international trade groups.

The creation IICRC S520 standard occurred in cooperation between microbiologists and other scientists, public health experts, industrial hygienists, remediation contractors and restoration service providers. Additionally, the proposed standard involved collaboration with cleaning and restoration training schools and trade associations that support the professional restoration industry as well as allied tradespeople and others with relevant professional and practical experience. The proposed IICRC S520 standard is intended for use by those working in the mold remediation industry. If the economists are correct, the standard could reduce the remediation cost by several fold, making it more affordable for clients who may either underinsured or not covered by property insurance.

The IICRC S520 standard does not consider remediation of certain other biological agents like Histoplasma capsulatum, Cryptococcus neoformans, Hanta virus, animal-derived pathogens or highly infectious agents including bird or bat droppings. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) offers operational guidance for proper decontamination procedures. Moreover, the IICRC S520 standard does not address the specific protocols and procedures for restoration, remediation, or abatement of hazardous or highly regulated materials when they may be present or likely to be present in a water damaged or intrusion in a microbial contaminated structure, system, or the building contents. Some examples of hazardous building materials not covered by the IICRC S520 standard include asbestos, inorganic lead, elemental mercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides, petrochemical solvents and radiological agents.

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