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Don't Turn a Blind Eye to IAQ
July 12, 2011 - Contact FacilitiesNet Editorial Staff »
All too often, managers give the impression that they don't want to know about any problems in a facility because there shouldn't be any problems. But in many cases, and definitely in terms of indoor air quality, what you don't know can hurt you.
Lack of knowledge about an IAQ situation may temporarily relieve the owner or facilities manager of hassle but not liability from a dissatisfied tenant or sick occupant.
Encourage communication from your staff. Make sure your staff understands the need to inform you about IAQ-related complaints so that you can respond in a timely and appropriate manner.
Search Out Problem Spots
Remember, your facilities staff is on the front lines and they see potential problems every day. You should conduct your own periodic walk-through inspections of your buildings focusing on IAQ problem spots — these walk-throughs are a facility manager's early detection system, helping to pinpoint problem areas and prioritize available resources.
Know the warning signs of IAQ problems. IAQ problems don't happen overnight. Standing water, moisture-damaged materials, visible microbial growth, mold, mildew and chemical odors can indicate a potential IAQ problem.
Obviously, occupant complaints, health problems and high rates of worker absenteeism also point to a potential problem.