Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Hire a Pro or get a Con.

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

Abita Springs, LA  08/25/2016

OK, I got your attention.  Yes, that’s strong language and, of course, not everyone who is not a professional is a con artist but somewhere between these two extremes is the well-intentioned handyman who kinda knows how to fix the problem, sorta.

In these times of disaster recovery, we are fortunate to have so many faith-based organizations and wonderful neighbors who want to help.  Sometimes the State even suspends licensing laws to help expedite the re-building of a devastated area.  We are blessed to have so many people with a heart to serve.  However, this doesn’t replace the role of the professional.

“Well, Mr. Hoffman,” I hear, “there is so much work to be done that there are not enough professionals to go around…THEN what do you do?”  That is the question.  And the reality is true that there is so much work to be done that finding a professional is virtually impossible…you probably know because you’ve tried.  Renting dehumidifiers, buying enough good chemicals, hauling away the debris all become challenges each and every day.  WHAT is the answer.  We think we have one!

There are TWO guidelines that are incredibly helpful in knowing how to do the work.  The IICRC S-520 (which can be purchased online as an electronic book) and the NORMI DIY Mold Removal Guide (downloadable at www.NORMI.org) are valuable resources and they don’t take long to learn!  YOU could become your own Project Manager and know more than most about how to do this work.

There have been some “trusted” institutions who have recently foolishly suggested that it’s necessary to hire a professional, someone trained and certified in Mold Assessment and/or Mold Remediation.  So you hire a professional to cut your hair, work on your car and educate your kids.  Why would you trust your most valuable physical asset (the investment you’ve put in your home) to an amateur.  Get informed now.

Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of NORMI

For more information on NORMI, go to www.NORMI.org, call 877.251.2296 or email support@normi.org

REPRINT–“Pollution, Lung Cancer Link Grow Stronger”

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Published: Jul 9, 2013
By Charles Bankhead, Staff Writer, MedPage Today
Reviewed by Robert Jasmer, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco

Action Points

Long-term exposure even to low-level air pollution may increase the risk of lung cancer and adenocarcinoma in particular.
Point out that analyses related to traffic intensity on the nearest street, increased road traffic in proximity to residence, and nitrogen oxide concentrations showed no significant associations with lung cancer.

Long-term exposure even to low-level air pollution may increase the risk of lung cancer, particularly adenocarcinoma, an analysis of 17 European studies suggested.

Ambient air concentrations of particulate matter <10 micrometers and <2.5 micrometers had statistically significant associations with adenocarcinoma of the lung, the most common lung cancer histology. Both types of air pollution were associated with >50% increased risk of lung adenocarcinoma, reported Ole Raaschou-Nielsen, PhD, of the Danish Cancer Society Research Center in Copenhagen, and colleagues.

Concentrations of particulate matter <10 micrometers also had a significant association with any lung cancer, they wrote online in The Lancet Oncology. "This very large multicenter study shows an association between exposure to particulate matter air pollution and the incidence of lung cancer, in particular adenocarcinoma, in Europe, adding substantially to the weight of the epidemiological evidence," Raaschou-Nielsen's group concluded. "The cohort-specific analyses consistently identified smoking-related variables as the most important confounders, in accordance with the fact that smoking is the most important risk factor for lung cancer," they noted. "Information about smoking variables was available for all the cohorts, and we would expect only weak confounding, if any, from exposure to environmental tobacco smoke." Multiple studies have implicated ambient air pollution as a potential cause of lung cancer. Lung cancer incidence has stabilized in recent years in most developed countries, but major shifts in histologic subtypes have occurred, the authors noted. Specifically, the incidence of adenocarcinoma has increased substantially, accompanied by substantial decline in the incidence of squamous-cell carcinomas. Of note, adenocarcinoma accounts for a majority of lung cancer cases among smokers and nonsmokers. The European Study of Cohorts for Air Pollution Effects (ESCAPE) maintains data from 17 European cohort studies that have investigated associations between various levels of air pollution and lung cancer. Raaschou-Nielsen and colleagues analyzed ESCAPE data to address three hypotheses: Ambient air pollution at the residence is associated with lung cancer risk Air pollution has a stronger association with lung cancer among nonsmokers and people with low fruit intake The association is stronger for adenocarcinoma and squamous-cell carcinoma than for all lung cancers combined The primary outcome was all lung cancer, and key secondary outcomes pertained to adenocarcinomas and squamous-cell carcinomas. The 17 studies comprised cohorts representing 12 cities and nine countries. Investigators analyzed data for each cohort, and cohort-specific estimated effects were combined by meta-analysis. Exposure estimates were derived from land-use regression models. The land-use models included particulate matter <10 micrometers, <2.5 micrometers, 2.5 to 10 micrometers, soot, nitrogen oxides, and two traffic indicators. The overall analysis comprised 312,944 study participants and about 4.1 million person-years at risk. During a mean follow-up of 12.8 years, 2,095 cases of lung cancer were diagnosed. The meta-analyses showed a significant association between lung cancer and particulate matter <10 micrometers, represented by a hazard ratio of 1.22 (95% CI 1.03-1.45 per 10 micrometers/m3). An HR hazard ratio of 1.18 for particulate matter <2.5 micrometers did not achieve significance (95% CI 0.96-1.46 per 5 micrometers/m3). Analyses of associations between air pollution and adenocarcinoma lung cancer showed significant associations for particulate matter <10 micrometers (HR 1.51, 95% CI 1.10-2.08) and <2.5 micrometers (HR 1.55, 95% CI 1.05-2.29). Associations were strongest for participants who resided at the same address for longer periods of time. Analyses related to traffic intensity on the nearest street, increased road traffic in proximity to residence, and nitrogen oxide concentrations showed no significant associations with lung cancer. The author of an invited commentary credited the investigators with designing and performing a study that "is sophisticated and overcame several limitations of previous air pollution studies." Nonetheless, Takashi Yorifuji, MD, PhD, of Okayama University, and Saori Kashima, PhD, of Hiroshima University, both in Japan, lamented the lack of recognition of air pollution as a contributing factor in lung cancer. For example, the 18th edition (2012) of Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine excluded air pollution from a list of lung cancer risks. "Although smoking is undoubtedly a strong risk factor, evidence for an association between air pollution exposure and lung cancer is also accumulating," Yorifuji and Kashima said. "Although the lung cancer risk associated with air pollution is much lower than that associated with smoking, everybody is exposed to air pollution. Thus, the public health effect is quite large." "At this stage, we might have to add air pollution, even at current concentrations, to the list of causes of lung cancer and recognize that air pollution has large effects on public health, although fortunately, like tobacco smoking, it is a controllable factor," they added. For more information on how to combat indoor air pollution, contact NORMI at support@normi.org or call 877.251.2296 CLICK ON "Participate in our Survey" to take FREE IAQ survey of your home.

NORMI Introduces New Active Membership

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

February 1, 2013 (Abita Springs, LA)

 

NORMI, the National Organization of Remediators and Mold inspectors, announced today that a single-tier membership level has been established for all ACTIVE NORMI Members beginning March 1, 2013. At www.NORMIPro.com, the following designations will apply:

 

ACTIVE—Those trained professionals who are currently and actively working in the industry of their choosing and who are taking advantage of all of the personal and business benefits of ACTIVE status.
PENDING—Those potential members who have registered for an upcoming class awaiting approval for membership and/or certification.
CHARTER—This new designation applies to ACTIVE Members who have a long history of membership and involvement in the industry of their area of expertise.
INACTIVE—Those trained professionals who have chosen to become inactive in the industry or not re-certify in the area of expertise in which they were trained.
NORMIProETF–This logo indicates that this member is a part of the NORMIPro Environmental TASC Force and available, when needed, for disaster recovery or other charitable work.

 

“These new designations are important to the public because it indicates the level of involvement the specific trained professional has in the industry,” said Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of NORMI. “The public needs to be able to see, at a glance, the current training status of the person they intend to hire and by having this information readily available, NORMI provides credibility and dynamic, up-to-date information regarding that professional. This information might otherwise be very difficult to find.”

NORMI certifies those who have been trained by its approved training providers after that individual has completed the certification process that sometimes includes municipal licensing, field experience and insurance. The potential client is still advised to request information from the listed professional regarding the current status of licensing, insurance and request referrals but the http://www.NORMIPro.comwebsite does speed the process and eliminate some of the concerns a potential client might otherwise have.

For more information regarding NORMI, its training providers or its members, please call 877.251.2296 or email support@normi.org and for more information about the NORMIProETF, see the website at www.NORMIProETF.org or call 877.751.3100

Top Ten Tips to Avoid Structural Mold from Hurricane Isaac

Monday, August 27th, 2012

A few simple steps can save property owners thousands of dollars of damage due to structural mold growth, according to Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI). Taking the necessary steps to avoid structural mold growth will not only preserve the integrity of a building but also the health of its occupants, further explains Kurt and Lee Ann Billings, authors of the book MOLD: The War Within, which details lessons learned from Katrina. Disaster area residents must be proactive, act quickly, and use proper personal protection equipment when implementing the following ten steps:
1) Remove standing water—remove wet carpets, rugs, draperies, personal belongings (if possible) and exterior mulch against the foundation walls, etc., to allow the subflooring and foundation to dry
2) Dry the structure out as quickly as possible—this is the most important thing you can do as structural mold will begin to form in the first 24-48 hours. Remove water-saturated sheetrock 18 inches above the highest watermark to increase structural drying
3) Turn up the heat and use a dehumidifier—when drying out a structure and/or its contents, reduce the indoor humidity to less than 60% and use heat to speed the drying process. Hot, dry air dries things faster than cold moist air
4) Circulate the air—turn on fans and dehumidifiers or open windows if there is no electricity to get air moving around to increase drying
5) Don’t seal it up until its dry—siding, sheetrock, and flooring repairs should be done only after the substrates are completely dry. Only use plastic to prevent further water damage.
6) Don’t use bleach—it is an effective sanitizer but will not remove mold at its root. The mold will look like its gone but it won’t be
7) Check your attic—undetected roof leaks can become big structural mold problems later
8) Inspect windows on the outside of the structure—check for possible water seepage through the caulking/seals
9) Use the sun to your advantage—if you can, move it outside. Let nature do its job
10) Spray the structure with an enzyme cleaner—as soon as the structure is dry to kill any organism such as mold and bacteria. Use sanitizers on any portion of the structure contaminated by sewage or flood waters.

For more information on water damage and flood resources, please see www.Flood.NORMI.org or to locate a certified mold inspector or remediator in your area, log onto www.normipro.com or call 1.877.251.2296.

Della White Cancer Research–Support Program

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Abita Springs, LA

Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of NORMI (National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors) announced last night on CE Training that the month of October will be dedicated to the memory of Della White, NORMI Director, who succombed to breast cancer in January of 2011. October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

“Della dedicated her life to developing relationships because she loved people,” said Doug Hoffman. “She set a high bar for NORMI to create an environment in which people felt important, because they are! She wanted people to succeed and worked hard to make sure our training and certification processes led people to the success they desired. Every single member was important to her.”

An estimated 207,090 new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed in women in the US in 2010 and nearly 40,000 women died as a result of breast cancer. Although, according to the US Bureau of Statistics, breast cancer incidence rates in the US decreased by about 2% per year from 1999 to 2006, every death touches families and friends all across the US.  Della White’s life touched thousands of people and her legacy will continue to be upheld by those who loved her.

NORMI has partnered with NORMIPro Environmental TASC Force (www.NORMIProETF.com) to provide opportunities throughout the month of October to donate a portion of their expenditures or profits to the Della White Cancer Research foundation, administered by her daughter, Jenna Piazza. NORMI is encouraging its strategic partners to share in the effort in whatever form they feel comfortable.

For more information, please contact NORMI at 877.251.2296 or go directly to www.NORMIProETF.com to contribute to the cause.