Indoor Air Quality
This policy is designed to help ensure that all College employees and students are protected from poor indoor air quality (IAQ).
Poor Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) is defined as abnormal environmental conditions related to indoor air that may cause adverse effects in occupants. This includes, but is not limited to, chemical odors, and carbon monoxide. The indoor environment in any building is a result of the interaction between the site, climate, building system (original design and later modifications in the structure and mechanical systems), construction techniques, contaminated sources (building materials and furnishing, moisture, processes and activities within the building, and outdoor sources), and building occupants. The following elements are involved in the development of indoor air quality problems. First is the source, there is a source of contamination or discomfort indoor, outdoors, or within the mechanical of the building. The HVAC system is not able to control existing air contaminants and ensure thermal comfort (temperature and humidity conditions that are comfortable for most occupants). The pathways of one or more pollutants connect the pollutant source to the occupants and a driving force exists to move pollutants along the pathways, and building occupants are present. It is important to understand the role that each of these factors may play in order to prevent, investigate and resolve indoor air quality problems.
Roles and Responsibilities
Employees are expected to report all incidents of poor indoor air quality to EH&S Office in a timely fashion. Likewise, students are encouraged to promptly report any IAQ concerns. Effective communication can encourage building occupants to improve their work environment through positive contributions. The person reporting the IAQ concern must provide accurate information about the factor that affect indoor air quality, and clarify the responsibilities of each party.
Initial Response and Investigation
The EH&S Officer is responsible for initial response during regular business hours and coordination of efforts to remediate any identified problem.
Once a call is received by the EHS Officer an immediately respond and investigate the complaint must take place. Immediate corrective action will be initiated as necessary, which may include chemical cleanup, stopping or changing a construction work practice, or adjusting a ventilation system.
Should an imminent danger situation exist, such as chemical spills or evidence of smoke, employees will be asked to evacuate the area.
A log of any IAQ incidents will be maintained in the EH&S Office. The log will contain the following:
The EH&S Officer should perform an initial walk through inspection of the area. The intent of the walk through inspection is to acquire a good over view of occupant activities and building functions and to look for IAQ problem indicators. A walk through inspection provides an opportunity to introduce facility staff and other building occupants to understand current responsibilities in relation to housekeeping and maintenance activities.
The ultimate goal for the EH&S Officer is a diagnostic building investigation and to identify and solve the IAQ problem in a way that prevents it from reoccurring and that does not create other problems. Many IAQ problems may have more than one cause and may respond to several actions. Successful mitigation of IAQ problems will require the cooperation of all building occupants. The occupants must be educated about the cause of the IAQ problems and about actions that must be taken or avoided to prevent a reoccurrence of the problems. Good communication with individuals is key to a successful IAQ program.
page is maintained by Facilities Management & Planning.
Send comments and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Last Modified: May 5, 2004