Indoor Home Environment

 

While not regulated by the Delaware General Health District, the indoor environment may be of concern to residents. These pages are maintained to provide information on topics of concern as they become available. With no rules or regulations, the Health District cannot enforce provision for situations occurring inside of a home or apartment, but some of the agencies listed on these pages may be a resource for residents.

The safety of the public and our staff is a priority for the Health District. To aid in identification, our Environmental Health inspection staff carry two forms of identification; a photo identification card and a metal badge. We encourage, and our inspecting staff welcome, the public to ask to see both forms of identification to prevent unauthorized access to a building, business or home. No Health District personnel will ever treat an operator, business owner, or homeowner differently for asking for identification. Should someone arrive at your location and not be able to produce both forms of identification, please turn them away and call our office immediately.

 

Mold

Mold is naturally occuring and can be found both inside and outside the home. It is almost always found in damp or moist areas and the spores are sometimes not visinle to the human eye. The main public health concern related to mold is the capacity for the spores to create allergic reactions in humans.

It is important to remember that mold problems are almost always moisture problems. Therefore, the first step in getting rid of mold is to get rid of moisture. Mold cleanup cannot begin until the moisture source is identified and eliminated. Once you have eliminated the moisture source, you can begin to assess the extent of the cleanup needed.

The level of cleanup needed is dependent on the amount of surface area affected. Most mold problems that are less than 10 square feet can be addressed by the homeowner. Anything larger than 10 square feet should be handled by a professional. It is important to note that individuals with mold sensitivity should stay away from affected areas and not attempt mold clean up.

Mold reactions vary greatly from one person to another. As each person may react differently, there is no standard available to test for mold and no Health District rules or regulations regarding mold.

Radon

Radon is a cancer-causing natural radioactive gas that you can’t see, smell or taste. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and the second leading cause of lung cancer in America. Radon comes from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water. As both uranium and radium minerals breakdown, the process produces and releases radon gas. Humans can be exposed to this gas as it moves through the soil around the foundation of homes, and eventually makes it way into a dwelling. Once inside, the radon gas builds up concentrations and moves freely throughout the home. This results in a greater chance of human exposure.

If you have concerns or questions related to radon, the Delaware General Health District recommends that you have your home tested. The Ohio Department of Health licenses professionals that are trained in testing and mitigation of dwellings. Health District Sanitarians are available for phone consultations regarding radon, but the Health District does not have any rules or regulations addressing radon, therefore, no actions can e taken on any home or rental property regarding radon levels.