Measuring indoor air pollution
Name: Gary A Latman
How can one measure indoor air quality? My school has no working ventilation
system, the heating system has no controlled air flow, as well as spewing
sooty particulates when the heat comes into our classroom. When flu system
hits and the oppressive (uncontrolled flow) heat comes into our classroom,
many teachers and students seem to have chronic bronchial problems all winter.
OSHA will not touch the public school, Illinois Department of Labor has sent
out an inspector, given the school a citation and that is all (it did not
scare the Board of Education into addressing the problem of indoor air
pollution--not on the agenda). Any suggestions out there?
Contact your union steward, or if not unionized, contact the American
Education Association. A union might pay to have an industrial hygienist test
the air-quality in your work place. If you can afford it out of pocket (bake
sale?) you could look up "industrial hygiene" in the yellow pages. Someone
might be willing to answer your questions for no charge. If the Department of
Labor has found measurably poor air quality, you may have good grounds for a
law suit. A union might hire lawyers too. Tread cautiously, though, so as
not to get blacklisted or fired, as whistle-blowers often do. If the problem
is really bad, it might be worth the price, but oh what a price.
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Update: June 2012