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Toxic Mold — Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Toxic Molds?
Molds include thousands of types of microscopic fungi. Molds in buildings and residences show up in colors such as red, green, brown and black. This mold occurs due to high humidity, dampness, leaks and water intrusion into such structures. These tiny organisms produce spores that spread through the air or in water.
While all molds are potentially harmful to health, black mold is most frequently associated with toxic molds. While certain molds can be a natural form of fungus, two types of toxic molds also show up in building structures, including Stachybotrys and Memnoniella. Exposure to these toxic molds can cause severe respiratory disease or even death to susceptible individuals.
How Do I Know If I Have A Mold Problem?
While we can usually see or smell mold infestations, detection of certain types of mold only occurs due to agency inspections. Since these molds generally grow and spread in moist areas, the first places to inspect are bathroom facilities and basements. Mold may also grow along the wallpaper, ceiling tile, insulation and wood.
What Health Hazards Exist Concerning Exposure To Toxic Molds?
The health effects of exposure to toxic mold are potentially permanent. Exposure can result in respiratory ailments such as asthma. It also results in increased susceptibility to pneumonia, sinus infections, persistent headaches, bronchitis, shortness of breath and difficulties in breathing. Such exposure can also result in lifetime sensitivity to molds of every kind. Mold-related illnesses may be difficult to diagnose and treat.
Who Is Most At Risk When Molds Exist?
While infants, elderly people and individuals with a compromised immune system or asthma are among the most likely to suffer illness because of mold exposure, every individual potentially can suffer ill effects due to exposure to molds.
Will Mold Result In Property Damage As Well?
Yes. Property damaged by mold may either require cleaning or disposal. It may be possible to remove mold from wood, appliances and hard surfaces by following standardized cleaning techniques. However, removal of mold from property such as upholstered furniture, beds and drapery may not be possible. Severe exposure can result in thousands of dollars of damage. Because of the potential ill effects due to mold, family members sometimes will need to vacate their home to escape increasing exposure.
What Actions Should I Take To Remedy A Toxic Mold Problem?
While the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides guidelines for removing mold, we highly recommend that you retain professionals to remove the toxic mold. And though there are a number of businesses engaged in removal of mold, care must be taken in making sure such companies are qualified for this task. Mold removal is a heavily regulated area and requires taking a number of precautions to make certain removal is accomplished safely.
It is always advisable to speak to an experienced attorney in dealing with toxic mold cases. This is especially necessary if you suspect property damage or illness and injury related to mold exposure.
Contact Us To Learn More About Your Legal Rights In Toxic Mold Cases
At Natoli & Associates, we can advise you regarding your rights. In certain circumstances, we can even direct you to the proper resources in making certain any mold removal process is done properly and complies with Massachusetts and federal law.