Services

At Sussex Environmental, we perform objective testing to determine air quality, levels of mold or mildew and will recommend a remediation plan based on scientific results, not scare tactics like you may hear from some other crawl space contractors. Learn the turth, save money.

INDOOR ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENTS & MONITORING

Symptoms of “sick building syndrome” are usually vague and the source of the problem unknown. Such problems have hidden costs in lost productivity, sick leave, and medical costs. SEC performs thorough, systematic indoor air quality investigations. Investigations begin with a careful study of complaints and the work environment. Initial studies screen the most likely and most common causes of reported symptoms. Clients are informed of the goals, and of the results, at each phase of the study. SEC can identify problems linked to inadequate makeup air, chemical contaminants and pollutants, and bioaerosol.

MOLD EVALUATIONS & PROTOCOLS

SEC has a broad understanding of indoor air quality problems and has conducted microbial investigations at industrial, health care, homes, office buildings, and facilities that have experienced water disasters and fires resulting in water damage. Based on evaluation results, we develop remediation protocol and recommendations to help reduce, eliminate, or control microbial or other contamination and monitor remediation contractor’s activities for compliance with protocols.

FUNGAL AND BACTERIAL SAMPLES & ANALYSIS

Never have expensive and unnecessary sampling performed where fungal growth is present. Sampling should only be performed as a supplement to a thorough investigation.

WATER DAMAGE INVESTIGATIONS (MOLD & OTHER BIOLOGICAL CONSULTING)

Using state of art technology such as infrared imaging camera, boroscope and moisture meters, we identify extent of water damage and biological contamination in properties to help bring them back to original appearance

REMEDIATION PLAN DEVELOPMENT & OVERSIGHT

To develop a remediation plan, we assess the size of the mold or moisture problem and the type of damaged materials before planning the remediation work.

The decision to relocate occupants should consider the size and type of the area affected by mold growth, the type and extent of health effects reported by the occupants, the potential health risks that could be associated with debris, and the amount of disruption likely to be caused by remediation activities.

REMEDIATION ACTIVITIES INCLUDE:

  • Repair the water or humidity problem.
  • Complete and carry out repair plan.
  • Revise and carry out maintenance plan if necessary.
  • Revise remediation plan as necessary, if more damage is discovered during remediation.
  • Communicate with building occupants, as appropriate to the situation addressing all concerns.
  • Ensure complete clean up of mold and dry water-damaged areas. Select appropriate cleaning and drying methods for damaged/ contaminated materials.
  • Contain and remove moldy building materials.
  • Identification of appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

INDOOR ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT

Building construction introduces contaminates into the building. If unaddressed, the contamination can result in poor indoor air quality extending over the lifetime of the building. Fortunately there are IAQ management strategies, if instituted during construction and before occupancy, which will minimize potential problems.

SEC will develop a plan to protect building surfaces, ductwork and air handling systems during construction and to minimize IAQ problems due to inappropriate construction techniques. As an example, ductwork should be kept clean and dry with shrink-wrap or Visqueen covers. Filters utilized for temporary ventilation during construction should be changed regularly through the course of construction.

The IAQ Management Plan should be completed before construction begins and should include construction-related IAQ procedures in the pre-construction and construction progress meeting agendas. Education of subcontractors and all field personnel on the goals of the IAQ Management

VOC SAMPLING BY DIRECT READING INSTRUMENT OR LABORATORY ANALYSIS

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are emitted from building materials, finishes (floor and wallcoverings), and furnishings. VOC testing may be conducted in response to IAQ complaints, to achieve LEED accreditation, or to evaluate vapor intrusion from underground contamination.

There are numerous methods of analysis for VOCs. Not all consultants understand VOCs and their association with poor environmental quality and health symptoms.
Sussex Environmental is experienced and educated and has the necessary equipment and understanding of VOCs and their evaluation and control.

THERMAL IMAGING & NON-DESTRUCTIVE MOISTURE ASSESSMENTS

Infrared thermography is the quickest and most definitive method to detect moisture, energy losses and electrical issues in buildings. Thermal camera investigations are a non-destructive inspection process which can provide us with valuable information on a variety of building issues.

A thermal camera can detect moisture in wall structures rising and lateral damp problems, building envelope, leaks mold in inaccessible cavities, water migration, water damage on internal decks, thermal signatures of latent moisture, poorly installed or inadequate insulation, air leaks in the building envelope, substandard sealing work How the thermal imaging works: All objects emit heat. This heat (thermal energy) is not visible to the human eye because of its short wavelength and therefore needs to be measured under the infrared spectrum. The process of thermal imaging measures this heat with infrared cameras and presents the picture of the heat being emitted. Many buildings present with damp problems that are costly to repair and can lead to structural damage and health issues if left unchecked. We use a combination of techniques and inspection tools to definitively determine the cause and source of moisture ingress. Thermal imaging is an effective tool to locate and check pipes and ducting for leaks and blockages. This is a non-invasive process that is utilised when the water pipes are concealed in the floor or wall cavities. The heat/cold of the pipes radiates through the surface and the pattern can easily be located with an infrared camera.

EXPERT DOCUMENTATION, REPORTING & TESTIMONY

There are two general classes of matters as to which expert testimony is admissible: (1) matters as to which the conclusions to be drawn by the jury depend on the existence of facts that are not common knowledge and that are specifically within the knowledge of persons whose experience or study enables them to testify with authority on the subjects in question; and (2) matters as to which the conclusions to be drawn from the facts stated, as well as knowledge of the facts themselves, depend on professional or scientific knowledge not within the range of ordinary training or intelligence. In the first class, the facts are stated by the experts, and the conclusion is drawn by the jury. In the second class, the expert sets forth the facts and states a conclusion in the form of an opinion which may be accepted or rejected by the jury.

SEC professionals have over 25 years experience in expert testimony in mold, indoor air quality, asbestos and lead in Maryland and Delaware court systems.

HEAVY METAL EVALUATIONS

SEC has professionals to assist owners with compliance with health and safety issues and environmental compliance. Our services include assessments and sampling for heavy metals such as but not limited to lead, cadmium, mercury, arsenic, welding fumes, etc.

ASBESTOS SURVEYS & INSPECTIONS

Property owners, developers, and facility managers responsible for facility renovations are often faced with determining the potential complications posed by the suspected presence of asbestos-containing building materials.

Were you aware that asbestos is still imported into the US from other countries? Were you aware that drywall joint compound is among numerous other building materials that may contain asbestos?

SEC provides comprehensive sampling, design and abatement services for asbestos-containing building materials. Asbestos management services are provided in support of real estate acquisitions, property development, and property rehabilitation to clients in the mid-Atlantic region. SEC can identify and test suspect asbestos-containing materials, ensure compliance with OSHA and EPA regulations, coordinate and provide asbestos abatement contractors to ensure timely removal of impacted materials to prevent delays in achieving construction schedules and/or alternative to avoid impact to asbestos-containing materials, and ensure that projects are thoroughly documented and electronically reported to meet your business and regulatory needs.

Our personnel are certified and licensed in Delaware, Maryland and Virginia and have extensive experience delivering asbestos management services for all types of projects.

SAFETY PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT & TRAINING

Effective safety programs require written policies and procedures for managers and employees to use as guidelines. SEC has extensive experience in developing these programs for our clients. These programs can be written as standalone documents, as a comprehensive safety program manual, or as an element to enhance an existing program manual, depending on your specific needs. Written policies and procedures help assure federal and state OSHA compliance, and such written programs are required by many of the federal and state OSHA regulations. The list below presents examples of safety program policies and procedures that SEHC has developed. “Injury and Illness Prevention Program “Hazard Communication Program “Chemical Hygiene Plan for Laboratory Operations “Bloodborne Pathogens Program “Personal Protective Equipment and Respiratory Protection Program “Permit-Required Confined Space Entry Program “Hearing Conservation Program

REAL ESTATE PROPERTY EVALUATIONS (INCLUDING PHASE 1 ASSESSMENT)

The purpose of a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment is to gather sufficient information to develop an independent professional opinion about the environmental condition of the property and to identify actual or potential environmental contamination which may impact the property value or effect claim to an “innocent land owner” exemption following acquisition. SEC completes comprehensive Environmental Site Assessments (ESA) in accordance with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Standards and Practices for All Appropriate Inquiries {(AAI), 40 CFR Part 312} and guidelines established by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) in the Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process / Disignation E 1527-05 (ASTM Standard Practice E 1527-05): Phase I Environmental Site Assessment, for real estate transactions, property development, bank financing, re-financing, and foreclosures, and other in-house proactive audit programs.

LEAD PAINT SURVEYS & RISK ASSESSMENTS

Lead Risk Assessments are conducted based on guidelines established by the US Dept of Housing and Urban Development and coupled with our experience of providing lead consulting to various clients. A lead based paint risk assessment is conducted to determine whether lead based paint hazards exist and, if so, provide solutions on reducing and managing such hazards until complete abatement takes place.

A lead-based paint hazard is any condition that causes exposure to lead from lead-contaminated dust, soil or paint that is deteriorated or present on accessible, friction, or impact surfaces that would result in adverse human health effects. At SEC, our staff are highly skilled at identifying potential lead based paint hazards and then using XRF testing, dust wipe testing and soil sampling to determine where lead hazards exist. Our risk assessment reports are designed to be easily understood with common sense and cost effective recommendations for dealing with identified lead hazards.