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26 Jan., '14.

 


Architects, Forensic Architects & Mechanical Engineers:

We provide A & E Firms a low cost, flat rate assessment, that always includes our report - a 'road map'; and 'baseline' monitoring data to identify and quantify presence of toxic materials at levels that preclude future problems and risks. Our services always include ongoing support that will sidestep future litigation, loss of ambiance, bad design reputation, and other problems. On remodels, we find toxics, which when disturbed, can cause huge headaches for designers. These include 'gifts' from Otto the Orkin Man, who started spreading totally unregulated, now forbidden poisons in 1901! Buildings cannot speak but they never forget.

Not covered, in our flat rate assessment, is remediation oversight, prior to required, follow up monitoring. We work with Architects and builders to achieve these goals. This firm is not interested, in the slightest way, of architectural changes nor embellishments. Our only interest is in the built environments' toxicity, and damage to the important 'Green Built' standards, when builders are fooled by unscrupulous building materials vendors, who are the lowest bidders. We never sell hardware nor provide remediation services as this 'client convenience' is a clear conflict-of-interest, and completely unethical!

For environmental auditing, Marsh uses his extensive experience, education, and training to combine critical elements of both level one and level two environmental audits. Who could be better qualified than the rare Chemist, with toxicology research experience? This is called the Exposure Science arm of Industrial Hygiene. These save clients' time and money and have much more value than a kid with a check sheet (who looks good on paper) and a team of corporate attorneys to cover their ass from the down side of an incompetent audit that misses too much. Such 'kids' are hired with ads that contain '1 to 3 years required experience that can be substituted with a Master's degree'! Those with 30 years experience are labeled 'over qualified'! That's like having too much money in the bank. Ironically, kids cost more even if they don't cause problems.

Our discreet "baselining", for design-build folks prior to building use, will reveal how to save money while making the next building even better. This sensitive, Scientific process reveals anything that can cause human medical problems easily. This knowledge of the actual chemical, biological, radiological, and physical conditions present is the best defense against future litigation, constitutes due diligence, and creates real value for how your clients' value your products. It can also predictively reveal impending hardware problems including appliance & HVAC deficiencies and failures at very low cost. Our data can enhance a 'life cycle cost analysis'. The resulting gains in ambiance are 'icing on the cake'. 'Baselining' protects you from the millions of tons of toxic, untested and unmonitored building materials that arrive on our shores annually from totalitarian countries who are necessarily the 'lowest bidders'! Scientists everywhere are appalled as such exposures would be so easy to quantify and prevent before the ships are unloaded.

Our monitoring data identifies & quantifies building systems' actual operation & performance, independent of the Engineer and skilled tradesmen. It reveals just how toxic those untested building materials brought to our shores in the world's largest ships, ~ a billion tons a year. It generates data from established laboratories that can reveal future design improvements in so many ways, including new ambiance and health improvements while reducing risks of litigation. Sophisticated methods can find and identify subtle, nuances critical to your clients' health. 'Fine tuning' prevents selection of natural materials that contain pesticides but, nevertheless labeled 'Green'. Ask for our list before you buy or specify. Our data enhances an engineer's 'life cycle analysis' and assures health in contaminated places, such as near fracking fields. Would this be a new client base?

We never use 'test kits', while 'grab samples' can have a place in planning. Those data can be worse than no data at all. Instead we use the same methods and labs as the Harvard School of Public Health. Some samples require continuous, 24/7 pumping for 30 days and nights. We help add benefits of rapidly evolving, science driven renewable energy technologies which augment that of the Engineer. This is consistent with LEED, A.S.H.R.A.E., and 'Green' building practices. These also follow the same process and logic as environmental real estate audits after the fact but are much more beneficial from the 'get go'. We please your difficult, picky clients!

For a partial list that will give an idea of what we seek, click on 'Homes' above and scroll down to the third list. As expansive as this list is, it is incomplete as additional monitoring is guided by the incoming stream of laboratory results and other sources. This is very 'doable' by assessing in/by related groups, e.g., we never quantify formaldehyde until we have quantified the full aldehyde panel. Commonly, IDing one can point to another unexpected contaminant. This is particularly true after remediation. We call this process "results driven". Our process takes about 12 months if the client's concurrent remediation is prompt. We support in house remediation with additional guidance at no extra cost.

Over the last 2-3 decades, our building investigations have revealed the near non existence of homes, schools, and work places that begin to comply with anything even close to being optimized for good health, illness minimization, and retirement maximization. Also missing are design/build standards, independent oversight & practices, with real time, lab results driven monitoring, that would produce such a structure. For the myriad of folks who are impaired with transplants, aging, and chronic illnesses linked to harmful environmental exposures, the situation is very pathetic given what low cost, complementary services the profession of Exposure Science/Industrial Hygiene could supply for designers, builders, owners and users. These cost so little too.

It is very important for Architectural firms to have a disclaimer to deal with construction in certain places that are down wind of very risky sources of emissions. Such a disclaimer will protect against the ever growing incidence and awareness of dangerous environmental conditions that are getting more and more ubiquitous. Ask for details and our assistance in this area too, including our records and a search of risky areas from environmental databases, etc.

We can assist Forensic Architecture Firms in the identification of certain building material contamination and other areas that result from forgotten Chemistry lessons. This includes subtle contamination, Below Regulatory Concern (BRC), after use even though the building may still be in good structural condition. It also includes gross contamination from misuse and criminal activity, such as extensive biological damage from illegal, indoor crop cultivation, manufacture of drugs, e.g., methamphetamine, and outright, malicious contamination from toxics or accelerants. It's not just asbestos anymore! We can match fire residues to particular wild fires from their 'finger print'. We include assessment of old, dangerous building materials including, but not limited to: lead, mercury, radon, pesticides, leaking underground storage tanks, underground plums migrating into a building from the same, preservatives in wall coverings, and copper, chromium, arsenic (CCA) 'green' wood products.

The biggest risk for Architects, Forensic Architects and Mechanical Engineers today is litigation from a new or newly remodeled building that is believed to cause ill health and lost productivity.27 Some of these are built or considered 'Green', in pristine places as Crestone and Ridgeway, Colorado! Toxic buildings, those with too many complaints from the 'get go', are such a common problem that PBS's NOVA28 and other producers have covered this topic in TV documentaries more than once since 1995. Sick buildings cost American businesses $ 60,000,000,000 per year (1994 dollars) in lost productivity and failed computers25! The solution to this incredible problem has been estimated to cost annually only $ 4. 8 Billion for less than 20 years, with an `initial average economic simple payback of 1.6 years'!25.1 This is a serious, chronic problem that is growing rapidly in the public's eyes with new focus on molds. See www.policyholdersofamerica.org, from our `Links' page, for what can and is happening, even without big storms and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)!

For long term protection of the A/E firm, we can write a plan for subsequent day to day maintenance operations and building control policies that will eliminate risks of future contamination buildup, poor IEQ and litigation. This is an area of growing importance as the level of competency of `building engineers' diminishes as the complexity of designs grows. Many of these folks have reading and writing skill deficiencies and tiny budgets that can come back on designers but disappear with our training. Do you have serious questions about a building management firm? Are they cutting too many corners for you too? Call to discuss our list of offending companies, their M.O.s, and what to do. These folks can and do create greater problems with building occupants' health and the `lack' of IEQ complaints and action. These folks have been known to employ unethical I.H. services to generate bad information and data to fool those with IEQ complaints. This is more a lot more expensive and risky then solutions from an independent, competent firm. To protect yourself, call for our tracking list of such firms and what they should be doing if they were legitimate, (303) 421-3383


Building Owners & Managers (B.O.M.A.s), Lessees, Hoteliers, Nursing Homes, & Realtors:

B.O.M.A.s and Realtors: Were buildings you manage tested, post construction, to establish baseline data on what's there from the beginning? This minimizes your exposure to subsequent SBS litigation down the road, minimizing long loss of the Certificate of Occupancy, lost health, and big, expensive cleanups? Think much more than asbestos, dirty ducts, and pesticides. Our audits address lead, mildew odors, mold & bacteria, now controlled substances placed by pesticide applicators, strange or dangerous looking things that you know will damage your bottom line. These problems make renting/sale costly, even in good times, and can generate bad publicity. Reported temperature swings, with our verification, are a strong indicator of the presence of other preventable, unrelated risks & problems that our services identify for your remediation/maintenance team.

Are you really familiar with products labeled "Green"? Green is nothing more than a selection process conducted by those with no training nor education in Toxicology, Exposure Science, Industrial Hygiene, Medicine, nor Epidemiology. This process is there for fraught with pitfalls. 'Green' products yield more profit to those using the designation for their products. Products made from natural substances, e.g., wool carpet, labeled 'Green' are particularly diabolical at fooling the layman as they are heavily treated with pesticides to prevent destruction by bugs prior to installation! This is in addition of all the pesticides sheep are treated with prior to wool harvesting. It follows that 'Green' wallpaper, regardless of the supplier, will be treated with arsenic & mercury fungicides when manufactured for the same reasons. These deadly poisons never go away and are hence 'time bombs' decades later during common non asbestos grade removal techniques that can and will contaminate the entire building.

Is an about to be purchased building full of really bad looking stuff left behind by a 'pack rat'? We've successfully managed big, WWII artillery ammo (live) and dangerous chemicals (solvent based finishes) mixed in with innocuous stuff (latex based paints) that are easily and cheaply disposed of under our supervision, saving big $$$. This is more common than thought in a society with so many sources. We also discreetly prevented this situation from attracting the police, HazMat, and news media. We can do the same for suspected drug labs after proof is taken clandestinely without the knowledge of those breaking the law. See the next paragraph discussing 'methamphetamine'. Buildings can't talk but they never forget! Regulated substances in buildings we direct the clean up of wind up Below Regulatory Concern (BRC). font>

Hoteliers: Methamphetamine or illegal drug concerns? Read the previous paragraph. Our discreet services preclude government intervention and loss of Certificate of Occupancy and income. See the next paragraph. The powerful, low cost tools of Forensic Chemistry also reveal bad designs, and will disclose building defects long before they get serious & expensive; and are your best, first line protection from litigation.

For special or up scale facilities, needing "state of the art", discreet protection or 'tracking', we can design concealed, laboratory grade remote sensing and data logging in real time, to monitor for such things as drugs, smoke, fire, gas, etc. Proactive protective powers of Chemistry is much greater before the fact. These are easily disguised as smoke detectors in common areas & expensive suites. When hooked to your existing camera/surveillance system it will produce 24/7, real time monitoring of what's really going on with invisible analyses. This can also reveal what's going on in adjacent places not on camera and is entirely legal! This information will give you notice to deny entry or increase rates discreetly for certain patrons and allow proper, discreet clean up long before government agents can find out or care. These are easily cost effective after the first event.

Environmental optimization not only reveals potential problems for timely, cost saving repairs, but the resulting extra pleasant environment increases your customers' loyalty and word of mouth promotion of your lodging. We travel to your site world wide.

Mold and bacteria have been getting a lot of attention from the press and legal community as a result of huge law suits that cost millions of dollars. Scientists can minimize such risks with good news services, are far more loved, encourage and assist in house remediation, are less expensive than attorneys & litigation, and do not just ascribe culpability! Our low cost, routine, proactive assessment, optimization, and baselining services; establish existing levels of potentially harmful substances and are your standard and 'action level' that reduces your bottom line.

Lessees: How 'bout some questions the folks above (BOMAs) do not want you to ask or think? Do you have an independent assessment to verify that you are actually getting what you rented, or leased? We are your first line of defense against a building that will cause productivity losses - even if it is 'Green" or LEED rated! Buildings in the U.S. only have a one year guarantee. Does the property have a written and properly funded IEQ plan? What is its budget? What is its pesticide history and 'loading'? Do you suspect the presence of controlled or regulated, hazardous substances, possibly drugs including ubiquitous methamphetamine, not just asbestos & lead? Does it actually comply with the appropriate A.S.H.R.A.E. standards for ventilation set down by the original design Engineer or their client who may have been too cheap for good engineering? Did they 'cut corners'? Does it need "Test and Balance"? Does it have complaints of poor IEQ from previous users? Is it used for important things other than people, such as museum treasures or other valuables that need special care or preservation substances? Our reports identify your best plan of action for improvements, optimization, productivity recovery, and litigation minimization. After the fact, our recommendations guide your maintenance crew to save time, costs, enhance morale & ambiance, and protect your exposure to litigation. They also reduce use of costly toxic substances, a growing issue, in the everyday maintenance of your building. As Dr. A. Einstein reportedly said: "A problem cannot be solved by those who created it".23.1 One can think of us as the Physicians of their mute building that NEVER forgets!

Building Engineers: We understand from those of you on the 'front lines', day to day, are frequently underestimated in knowledge, ability, and understanding of what buildings require, and are in constant need to save a nickel here, there, and everywhere on the facility. We also know that some building owners don't give a damn about complainants. We freely give `Building Engineers' the needed questions for their supervisors, building owners and managers to improve funding and respect they may have forgotten or ignored. This includes minimization of your risks of massive, rapidly growing litigation from newly realized problems from mold and bacteria contamination30, among many others. Such a list is customized for your asking and situation.

Our monitoring & assessment services go way beyond a building Engineer's job description and what supervisors expect, saving money, time, and energy, by making problems disappear; and make you look like a savior, increasing your promotability. If you think you have gotten questionable laboratory information on regulated substances such as asbestos, lead, radon, mold, especially from a regulatory agency, you need to have us evaluate your risks of having bad or inadequate information.31

Our evaluation starts with questions and information for management that will make them realize your real needs and their liabilities, as well as protection for your position. We can determine with hard laboratory data if a complaint is true (from a 'canary' who you can benefit from), or psychosomatic. Our evaluation can nip litigation in the bud. Call to discuss your options and how & where to start. We know that buildings are created from large, one time budgets that disappear when construction is finished-even if they have created big problems from inadequate design.

Nursing Homes can present special problems for several reasons, not the least of which is the fact that inspections from the regulatory agencies fail to address important issues, e.g., Indoor Air Quality. The fact that most of the victims cannot complain because of illness or age, or have employment fears, exacerbates these problems. However, such problems cut client base, reduce income, and unnecessarily increase risks for nursing home owners & operators. We have simple, doable, low cost techniques that reduce worry, concerns for inspection problems and failure. It fact, this author wrote a white paper addressing these important issues, and their simple solutions, that are an 'early warning system' for potential problems regulators will find. Such revelations can pay for themselves in energy savings, reduced house cleaning & employee turnover, lost business, litigation expenses, and greatly improved ambiance and quality of life.


Building & Home Inspectors, Including Civil Engineers:

Folks, including your clients, just do not understand the complexities, dynamics, and diversity of environmental contaminates. Their thinking goes something like this: How could such a beautiful building be harmful? Why would a designer and builder create a toxic building? The answer: Because they do not have any training, education nor expertise relevant to Exposure Science nor anything else that is even remotely relevant. An inspection Engineer's biggest downside risks are oversights of a toxic or deleterious substance or environmental condition. You have two choices: Buy expensive E & O insurance, which will make you less competitive with higher fees; or recommend our services in these special circumstances, where you spotted or suspect chemical, biological, or physical contamination.

When you recommend our services to your clients, your liabilities go away completely and you are seen in a very positive, ethical light. We can write verbiage for your report of findings free that will define this issue. It can include something like: "Upon inspecting your premises we highly recommend additional evaluation from an independent Professional Exposure Scientist/Forensic Chemist, as the presence of: (gas stations, within 10 kms; industrial facilities; dry cleaning businesses, with potential leaking underground storage tanks; structural floors, and/or suspected mold; hidden sewer and gas lines; flues and fire boxes; new appliances you suspect may have small, unacceptable leaks; suspected asbestos; government (Department of Energy) and military facilities; wetting longer than 72 hours; natural gas 'fracking' well fields; pesticides; radioactivity; very environmentally sensitive people, including the aged, very young, or transplant recipients; or________, {select})". Carbon Monoxide, that is just starting to come from a fire box nearing the end of its useful working life, in a boiler that is too small for an inspector's head, is extremely dangerous but easy for the Exposure Scientist to identify & quantify with his sensitive methods. We can easily tell the difference between 3 and 4 parts per million! Ditto for hidden or buried sewage and gas lines. Our data can also reveal many other dangerous things we all benefit knowing.

It goes without saying, should we find an oversight on your part or anything else, you specify you would like a second opinion on, you would be the first to very discreetly find out. This is an iron clad protection of your interests that maximizes your income, minimizes risks, while enhancing your credibility and professionalism. We can work with your firm symbiotically to identify your clients' special, complex problems, and minimize your risks of oversight, and provide you with a much more professional & lucrative inspection service. E.g., if you can see mold the problem is far, far above medical concern. Our monitoring data will tell you exactly when those structural floor problems are gone. Subsequent, follow up monitoring data will verify that its management is under control - even though recurrence of such problems due to wetting take only 72 hours.

We feel the next `hot topic' will most likely be dangerous and/or explosive levels of vapors of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in buildings of all kinds that migrate in from underground solvent plumes originating from old, sometimes distant, industrial facilities, including dry cleaning establishments, manufacturing facilities, and the usual gas stations. See: www.denverpost.com for the front page article on 6 January, 2002. These are all ticking time bombs for all involved in property, property transfers, lending and inspections. These same precautions apply to long forgotten landfills.


Carpet Cleaners and Disaster Restoration:

Carpet, Fire, Flood and Disaster Remediation Firms: Use our services to get your job done right the first time. Our services identify the scope of needed clean up as well as risks of dangers that can be present, even if users have particular environmental sensitivities. We use the science of monitoring and published methods to decide what needs cleaning or discarding. This makes difficult cases easy and produces data that is 'lawyer proof'.

After the fact, our methods quantify degree of clean up, identify undiscovered problems hidden by the original mess, and answer the question: Was remediation successful and thorough enough to minimize medical insults, to the desired degree, including mold & bacteria, fire residues, chemicals, pesticides, lead and toxic metals, asbestos, and any other client specified contaminate. We establish this level of protection with a body of hard analytical data that is acceptable to insurance carriers. This also protects your firm from accepting blame or responsibility for other unrealized contaminates, natural events that might have caused a recurrence from previous inadequate or sloppy work of others.

Did the insurance underwriter26.1 or adjuster put a `Band aid' on your problem(s) to minimize their costs? Good science has powerful analytical tools to quickly and easily identify complex claims' problems as well as how to proceed towards a payment that's fair to you and the client. The importance of changes in covered mold claims coverage and development of data from their assessment are finally being realized for what they are: Not often killers in and of themselves, but an important part of total human exposure(s) that have important medical consequences. Environments, good or bad, never have only one important problem (contaminant).

Adequate remediation for one group of problems may be inadequate for other(s) present but unknown. We have found very substantial oversights on the part of other `assessors' as well as those who choose to ignore medically important contamination because they are Below Regulatory Concern (BRC) or they have cut corners on necessary remediation they think someone else will pay. Beware, we have found the latter to be all too common. Folks, including children, with special needs because of compromised health or respiratory systems, including asthma, are becoming more and more prevalent. If they are not compromised they may soon become so. It is their nature that unhealthy populations of mold always include populations of bacteria that compete with each other and are hence very dynamic in both quantity and species. Both have to be monitored as both can be harmful or indicative of other present problems. Identification of both respirable & non respirable, viable types is necessary for human health. Quantitation of bacteria is a much more powerful way to determine impending pluming problems than a plumber. Our results are also very important information to a treating Physician.

Has your honest, responsible disaster or other remediation firm been given a bunch of laboratory data or other info on your facility that you do not understand while they are asking you to finish their work (abandonment) because they are incompetent or worse? Have they presented things that look `fishy', or you do not trust an insurance adjuster? Do you wish to avoid serious risks of litigation & losses? Do you need to have those risks clarified? Our analyses of their data, proclamations, & judgments are very important to your bottom line, success, perceived professionalism and protection from litigation and make you look very astute. Call us for our solutions.