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Indoor Air Quality

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10/17/2019 - Environmental Services

Indoor Air Quality complaints caused by the presence of odors, irritants, allergens, thermal discomfort, disease clusters, or visual indicators such as mold growth or excessive dust, are a signal ...

Vapor Intrusion Consulting

The EPA and various state agencies identify vapor intrusion (VI) as a significant contaminant pathway. As a result, VI testing acts as a critical element of promoting acceptable indoor air quality (IAQ). When a building has a negative air pressure mode, vapors under its slab can infiltrate its interior. These vapors can result in health risks to the building's occupants and increase liability to the organization. 1Source performs vapor intrusion testing and consulting to reduce liability and improve safety.

The Importance of Vapor Intrusion Testing and Remediation

Experts first recognized vapor intrusion as a building health hazard in the 1980s. When a subsurface source generates vapor-forming chemicals, the vapors can travel through cracks in a building's foundation, walls or floors. Vapor-forming chemicals that can infiltrate a building include:

  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs), including benzene and trichloroethylene
  • Semivolatile organic compounds such as naphthalene
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls and pesticides
  • Elemental mercury

When these compounds accumulate in a space, they can pose health risks and create safety hazards. The occupants cannot always detect an odor from these vapors because they do not always reach their odor threshold. Vapors can create a risk in either low or high concentrations. While high concentrations of chemical vapors have an immediate risk, lower levels may pose an issue after long-term exposure.

Testing your workspace for vapor intrusion will ensure that you do not have these risks in your building.

Vapor Intrusion Consulting Strategies

During a vapor intrusion consultation, 1Source professionals will conduct a thorough analysis and make recommendations based on EPA guidelines. Reviewing sub-slab vapor data serves as the basis for the rest of the VI consulting services. Once 1Source experts have sub-slab vapor data, they'll develop a detailed understanding of:

  • Building characteristics
  • Building systems
  • Building operations
  • Building variables
  • Building contents
  • Building occupants
  • Vapor pathways
  • Potential contaminants from products and materials stored in the facility
  • Other characteristics of the site

These factors help the team consider any background contamination or additional indoor air contaminants. Isolating the elements related to vapor intrusion ensures the most accurate analysis results possible. After obtaining this information, 1Source professionals will perform a building investigation that includes:

  • Conducting direct reading measurements of potential pathways as well as background contaminant sources during the initial visit and at the start and finish of the sampling survey
  • Identifying specific contaminants for sample collection and analysis
  • Interpreting laboratory data

Once the 1Source team has testing results and building information, we can make recommendations for remediation and prevention. We'll use the collected data to take the following actions:

  • Develop a vapor intrusion work plan (VIW) for review and approval by regulators, if needed
  • Meet with employees to discuss an indoor air sampling survey
  • Implement the vapor intrusion work plan using Summa canisters
  • Provide full documentation and recommendations to address vapor intrusion guidelines for various states

Throughout the consulting process, 1Source works closely with industrial hygienists, environmental engineers, hydrogeologists and other interdisciplinary experts. Our team will also coordinate with state regulatory staff to ensure full compliance of your workplace.

Rely on 1Source as Your Vapor Intrusion Consultants

For more information about VI consulting from 1Source, request a proposal online.

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