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Deadly storms exacerbate mould and fungus issues

Expert warns of potential health problems

NEWS, MEP, Damp, Jeddah, Kuwait, Moulds, Storms, Vivotec

Unhealthy and potentially deadly organisms have already started to grow and spread following the massive storms in Jeddah and Kuwait.

And, according to Steve Ashby, owner of Vivoteq, they will infest entire buildings in a matter of a few weeks.

The extreme storms claimed the lives of 30 people in Saudi Arabia between Saturday and Tuesday morning, according to the Civil Defence.

A further 3,865 people were evacuated from areas in danger of floods, while tents were set up for temporary accommodation for 2,000 people in Al Jouf.

Meanwhile, Kuwait temporarily suspended flights to and from its international airport due to heavy rain.

Even once the weather has abated, organic materials, like wallpaper, wallboard, furniture, clothes, shoes and other personal effects have absorbed all the water and moisture that entered buildings in the fierce storms, providing a perfect breeding ground for mould.

Ashby said: “Mould spores are very small (less than four microns in size), and as many as 250,000 spores can fit on a pin head.  A person can inhale as many as 750,000 of these spores per minute.  Therefore, you cannot see how widespread the infestation really is.

“Immediate mould and fungus eradication treatment is imperative for any property which has had water damage and where the occupants are complaining about a bad smell, or having health issues. These can be anything from runny and itchy eyes to headaches, coughing fits and in more serious cases, difficulty breathing.”

Based in Dubai, with a 100 per cent success rating, Vivoteq has worked across the GCC for over 10 years, bringing their specialist skills and knowledge to potentially dangerous situations like these.

The company creates healthy indoor environments and improves air quality through a range of services including mold remediation, AC duct cleaning, air purifier installation, and total surface protection through disinfection and sanitization. 

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Construction Week - Issue 730
Feb 21, 2019