A year ago, life changed drastically, and a large number of employees had to pivot their routines and begin working remotely. This new home-office reality provided everyone with a sense of security and protection, distancing themselves from the possibility of contracting the virus. However, with the new vaccines and measurements put in place, most companies have decided to return to their office buildings and begin the old 9-to-5 again.
Moving back into an office space can be extremely challenging and scary for most individuals. The risk of contagion is still there, and you may not know how the building has been disinfected. When it comes to safety, you can never be too sure. That is why Pure Air Control’s Director of Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory, Rajiv Sahay, PhD, FIAS, CIAQP, suggests keeping an eye out for six critical red flags.
- Lack of New Air Cleaning/Monitoring Technology: Sahay explains in order to guarantee a clean office building, it is important to utilize new and functioning technology that will allow the improvement of in-room air purification and ventilation. However, this is not enough. It is necessary to have the appropriate air quality monitors in place for additional risk management.
- No Guidance or Service Records Posted: As a nationally recognized indoor air quality (IAQ) firm, Pure Air Control reminds office building management of the requirement to have new safety guidance (social distancing, wearing masks, washing hands, traffic flow, sanitizing) or service records for environmental testing and cleaning. If these records are not posted, employees might be at risk because the appropriate steps are not being taken to create a safe office space.
- Housekeeping is Status Quo: In the last months, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has advised everyone to increase the cleaning of every surface. Sahay suggests employees are aware of how often and how the office building is clean. Otherwise, it can become a petri dish for pathogens.
- Employee Complaints: One of the signs Pure Air Control encourages everyone to be aware of is employees complaints. When there is a risk for contagion, it can manifest as eye, nose, or throat irritation, allergic reactions, and asthma attacks, among others.
- Dusty Conditions: This IAQ firm explains the biggest red flag is particulate buildup. Office buildings should always check for dirty HVAC, poor filtration, and the buildup on furniture, ceilings, and air vents.
- Musty Smells: Sahay says one of the major warning indicators of bacterial or mold growth in the building or HVAC system is a musty smell.
These six red flags are Pure Air Control’s guide to a safe office building, guaranteeing your employees are safe to go back to in-office work. This IAQ firm offers several services—Certified Healthy Building Program, Building Sciences, Environmental Diagnostics Laboratory, Building Remediation Sciences, 24/7 Remote Air Quality Monitoring and Emergency Response—to help you keep your office space safe.
Although it may not have occurred to office management before, checking the quality of indoor air is extremely important to avoid the risk of contagion and make sure the ventilation in your building is working properly. These days, the air quality we breathe has become a priority, and companies like Pure Air Control Services are bringing awareness and keeping everyone safe.