Concern: Veterans Elementary School: February 10th, 2020 (CXXVES202000014F)

Portable #114
Date of IEQ Report Form
Date of Report
At times there is a chemical like fume that seems to come from vents when HVAC system is running for cooling and for heat. Since our team has moved to the portable (summer 2019) there have been a series of upper respiratory issues experienced by staff and so we are concerned that there may be a problem with the air quality and would like it tested.
IEQ Investigation Process

Identify deficiencies that may impact IEQ and/or sources of odor concerns. Typically includes the following depending on the nature of concern, but not limited to:

  • interview/questionnaire of concern individual(s)
  • inspection above drop ceiling (condition of roof deck, pipe insulation, return air plenum)
  • inspection of ventilation system (operation of variable air volume box and outdoor air dampers, check controls, measurements of carbon dioxide, temperature and relative humidity, sources near outdoor air intake, measure return and supply air volume, cleanliness of coils, liner and condensate pan)
  • inspection of exterior
  • inspection below drop ceiling (housekeeping, sink and floor drain traps, signs of past and present moisture concern via visual and/or moisture meter, mold growth, ensure connection of current and capping of abandoned sanitary vents, odorizers, excessive plants and fabric items, identify potential pathways, and measure volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide, and lighting)

Date(s) of Assessment: February 13, 2020

The temperature (70.4 degrees Fahrenheit (F), relative humidity (35.2%), carbon dioxide (492 parts per million (ppm), and carbon monoxide (0.0 ppm) were acceptable.

No odors were sensed before or after the Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) became operational (heat).

No carpet moisture was detected in the carpet located at the entry/exit doors.

No elevated moisture was detected within the portables drywall.

A thermal anomaly was detected to the right of the rooms back door. Cold air appeared to be infiltrating into the space at a gap between drywall and the floor. Additionally, the drywall exhibited conditions of previous moisture damage (drywall significantly harder). 

A piece of drywall was removed so that the backside of the drywall could be observed. No visible mold growth was observed, however the studs behind the drywall appeared deteriorated. A slight odor (musty/wood) was detected, after removing the piece of drywall.

The Office of the Environment contacted Building Services (Carpentry) to assess the area. Carpentry removed the drywall in the area and determined that the light (outside of the portable) had historically leaked. Carpentry indicated the leak was historic and is not currently leaking. The previous cause of the moisture intrusion may have been remedied during routine portable maintenance.

Additionally, while removing drywall, Carpentry identified a penetration in the siding of the portable.

The thermostat cover was missing.

Several non-issued appliances such as a refrigerator, microwave, and stand-alone lamp were observed.

Corrective Actions
February 28th, 2020

Building Services (Carpentry) removed stained drywall and removed/replaced impacted/deteriorating wood studs and insulation. The penetration identified after removing drywall was sealed to prevent further moisture intrusion. A new section of sub-floor was installed to eliminate the gap that caused outside air to infiltrate.

March 9th, 2020

As a precaution, a work order was placed for Building Services to assess the portable's HVAC unit. The thermostat cover is to be replaced as part of this work order.

March 11th, 2020

Administration is to determine if their is an instruction need for the appliances and have them removed as necessary.

Date Closed
Tracking Number