Chief school administrator Suzanne Ivans was the first school official to respond to the offer from Lab Results, an indoor air quality (IAQ) improvement company that specializes in mold detection and location.
“We got some very useful information that would have been difficult, if not impossible, to get any other way,” said Ivans. “At the very least, it would have been very time consuming,” to compile the same information with other types of testing.
“I would encourage other schools and businesses to utilize this service,” she continued, “and be more proactive in maintaining a healthy indoor environment for the people entrusted to them, especially the children. By finding potential problems early they might be able to minimize costs and prevent a small problem from growing into a large and costly operation.”
According to Ivans, the inspection resulted in the school taking action such as replacing some carpeting, replacing some radiator valves, and repairing some leaky toilets. Plans have also been made to replace areas of rotting wood.
“Some things confirmed what we already knew,” she said. “Other things we didn’t.”
Built in 1832, Stockton Borough School is the oldest and smallest K-6 school in New Jersey. Celebrating its 166th year, the school has a record of being proactive in protecting the health and safety of its students.
The Mold Dog inspection is offered free of charge for a limited time and on a first-come, first-serve basis, to schools in the K-6 range in New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia metropolitan areas. Call 800-630-9047 for more information. According to the company, results of all inspections are confidential.
“Schools in which mold is found are under no obligation to use Lab Results LLC to assist in its removal,” said Jason Earle, founder of Lab Results. “This offer is our way of helping protect the children in our communities from the health threats of mold.”
What’s A Mold Dog?Mold Dogs are the company’s tool to help protect people from the pervasive threat of mold in homes, schools, and offices. According to Lab Results, the dogs “can quickly find hidden mold in any building, enabling the growth to be removed efficiently and economically.”
“Oreo is delightful,” Ivans said, “and it was touching to see such a wonderful bond between Oreo and Jason.”
Oreo is a year-old Labrador mix. Lab Results calls her a “four-legged mold detective. She is one of fewer than two dozen animals in the U.S. certified as Mold Dogs by the Florida Canine Academy, which also trains canine teams for detection of bombs, drugs, money, weapons, termites, and accelerants used in arson.”
According to Ivans, she was first skeptical when she heard about the offer of having a dog come in to sniff for mold. However, she researched it and was impressed with what she learned. And she figured, “What have I got to lose?”
The inspection itself was very “pleasant and low key,” Ivans said. It was certainly much less stressful than an inspection would be if the workers wore contaminant suits.
“Oreo is an intelligent mold inspector who can tell us precisely where mold hides: behind walls, under floors, in ceilings, or wherever it lurks,” said Earle. “Knowing where mold hides — and where it doesn’t — can save thousands of dollars in remediation costs.”
Lab Results LLC is based in Princeton, N.J. Contact Earle at 800-630-9047; firstname.lastname@example.org; or visit www.labresultsllc.com.
Publication date: 08/25/2003