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After the storm: Assessing hurricane damage for insurance claims

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 14, 2020 2:57:05 PM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Hurricanes wreak significant damage in the coastal areas they hit—destroying the built and natural environments in their path. Once a storm has passed, businesses and property owners focus on recovery and restoring the local economy. A key piece of that process is determining the damage caused by the hurricane. Property owners need to have funds to restore their property or business and insurance adjusters need to provide appropriate funds for covered damages. Both Both need experienced engineers to provide wind and flood assessments suitable for property insurance, to understand their needs and determine the facts to decide and defend claims. 

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Managing Legionella Risks During Reopening

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 24, 2020 12:33:32 PM / by Michael P. Mellette, Sc.D., CIH, CSP, CHMM

The prolonged shutdown of businesses and buildings during the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant reductions in normal water use for many commercial buildings, hotels, and public facilities. These reductions have increased the opportunity for Legionella growth in building water systems and created a significant risk for transmission of this waterborne bacteria to returning occupants. It's important that building owners and managers understand the risks leading to increased Legionella growth and consider them as part of an overall reopening strategy.

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Facility & Operational Planning: COVID-19 FAQ

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 3, 2020 2:48:01 PM / by Martin J. Barry, PhD, CIH, CSP, PE

In our recent webinar, Getting Back to Work Safely: Experts Discuss Facility & Operational Planning for COVID-19, participants submitted many great questions reflecting the state of uncertainty and the desire for pragmatic answers from our experts. We developed this FAQ resource to help.

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Back to School COVID-19 Basics

[fa icon="calendar'] May 28, 2020 9:33:04 AM / by Martin J. Barry, PhD, CIH, CSP, PE

There are major benefits for students of all ages to return to school. But if a school system reopens business as usual (like in 2019), uncontrolled COVID-19 transmission within the school system and the community could cause major public health problems. Reopening schools with reasonable and workable changes should radically reduce that COVID-19 threat.

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CISA Federal Guidance Includes Construction as Essential Critical Infrastructure Sector

[fa icon="calendar'] Apr 9, 2020 1:28:20 PM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Many cities and states have prohibited construction activity in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, as they shut down non-essential business activity to help slow the spread of the virus. Yet construction is an essential industry, especially at this time both to protect critical infrastructure and to maintain economic activity.

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PFAS Contamination in Massachusetts Drinking Water Supplies

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 20, 2019 9:00:00 AM / by Michael P. Mellette, Sc.D., CIH, CSP, CHMM

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of chemicals that have been manufactured and used in the United States since the 1940s. PFAS are commonly found in both household and industrial products such as non-stick coatings, stain and water repellent fabrics, and cleaning chemicals. Ground water contamination with PFAS has been associated with fire-fighting foams, manufacturing sites, landfills, and other industrial operations. Because of their chemical structure, PFAS are highly persistent in both the environment and human body. Studies have indicated that some PFAS compounds may be associated with adverse health effects, including:

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Waterproofing technology to protect against concrete corrosion

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 12, 2019 9:00:00 AM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Concrete has been in existence for over 2,000 years and it is not only the most used manufactured material in the world, but also is one of the oldest. Concrete is critical to our societies infrastructure as it is found in our schools, hospitals, city buildings, apartments, and more.

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Mediation vs. Arbitration

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 24, 2019 10:00:00 AM / by Mark McGivern, CSI, Aff. M. ASCE

Mediation vs. Arbitration. What’s the difference? Mediation and Arbitration are often and easily confused, especially if you are not in the field of law. The simplest way to differentiate is:

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Indoor Air Quality Issues and Spray Polyurethane Foam Insulation

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 19, 2019 10:00:00 AM / by Michael P. Mellette, Sc.D., CIH, CSP, CHMM

Increased emphasis on green building design has resulted in a greater demand for more energy efficient building materials such as spray polyurethane foam (SPF) insulations.  Despite their excellent air sealing capability and insulating properties, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recognized that exposure to the isocyanates and other vapors, aerosols, and dusts created during and after installation, may cause respiratory sensitization, asthma, and odors. 

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Legionella Management in the Hospitality and Healthcare Industries

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 13, 2019 12:34:16 PM / by Michael P. Mellette, Sc.D., CIH, CSP, CHMM

Legionella is a type of Gram-negative bacteria that occurs naturally in freshwater environments.  Although it is present in nature, Legionella becomes a substantial health concern when allowed to multiply in a building’s water systems.  According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC), from 2000 through 2015, there were 49,930 confirmed Legionnaires’ cases in the United States. Legionnaires’ disease is a severe type of pneumonia that can rapidly become fatal.  It is caused by breathing in aerosolized water droplets containing Legionella, with the majority of recognized Legionnaires’ disease cases occurring in hotels, resorts, cruise ships, and the healthcare setting.

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