Guidance for N.J. homeowners struggling with Sandy-generated mold

    Because all the flooding caused by Superstorm Sandy continues to cause concern about mold, the New Jersey Health Department is providing some guidelines to help homeowners and businesses.

    There has not been an increase in reported health problems resulting from mold in flood-damaged buildings, according to Health Commissioner Mary O’Dowd.

    However, there are potential risks, she said.

    “Primarily related to allergic reactions or breathing problems for those who have underlying conditions such as asthma or emphysema,” she said. “It can also cause allergic-like reactions relative to eye irritation.”

    A brochure available on the Health Department’s website advises residents how to correct mold growth before it becomes troublesome.

    “You want to make sure that you’re removing all of the potential wet material, making sure that you cleanse it properly using a detergent and then making sure it’s completely dry before you close that wall back up again,” O’Dowd said. “Take your time and do it right.”

    If you’re hiring a contractor to do the job, the brochure recommends getting bids from different companies and make sure they have specialized training for mold assessment work.

    Free classes on mold remediation are also available for homeowners, businesses and local building officials.

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