Jack Springston, CIH, CSP – Mold & IEQ: New Guidance & Current Events

Air Date: 1-17-2020|Episode 570

This week on IAQ Radio+ we welcome Jack Springston, CIH, CSP for a discussion on mold and IEQ in NYC and around the country. There are a lot of current events and new guidance documents out or coming out and Jack is on top of it.

Jack Springston has over 30 years’ experience in industrial hygiene and occupational health. He’s been a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) since 1993, and is one of less than 50 active CIHs who also hold a sub-specialty certificate in Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ). He is the current Chair of the American Industrial Hygiene Association’s (AIHA) Continuing Education Committee, and in 2012, he was made a distinguished Fellow of AIHA. Jack is currently the Industrial Hygiene Services Manager for ATC Group Services in New York City, Albany, and Long Island.

Jack received a BS Degree in Environmental Biology from LIU/Southampton College and a MS Degree in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences from Hunter College. He is a past-Chair of AIHA’s Indoor Environmental Quality committee and Biosafety & Environmental Microbiology committee. In addition, he is currently the Vice Chair of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienist’s (ACGIH) newly reformed Bioaerosols Committee. LEARN MORE this week on IAQ Radio+!

Z-Man’s Blog:

Mold and IEQ, Current Events & New Guidance

Jack Springston, CIH, CSP has over 30 years’ experience in industrial hygiene and occupational health. He’s been a CIH since 1993, and is one of less than 50 active CIHs who also holds a sub-specialty certificate in Indoor Environmental Quality. Jack is a dedicated industry volunteer, who unselfishly shares his vast experience and insight with various AIHA and ACGIH committees.

Nuggets mined form today’s episode:

ATC is an environmental consulting firm (asbestos, lead, industrial hygiene, construction inspection, etc.). ATC has more than 100 offices (including Alaska and Hawaii) and 3500 employees. Jack serves as ATC’s industrial hygiene services manager for NYC, Long Island and Albany.

Jack’s workload is diverse: insurance surveys following fire and water losses, exposure monitoring in hospitals (fluranes, EMFs, endoscopy, etc.), expert witness services, legionella, mold, asbestos, etc. He has 20+ year’s experience with EMFs.

NYCHA (New York Housing Authority) has 306 developments, 2600 buildings, 173,000 units, 564,000 residents. (NYCHA is the equivalent of USA’s 32nd most populous city, ahead of Atlanta and Miami.) Many of these buildings are high rises. Some of these buildings are so unsafe, that police are fearful of entering. NYCHA has commissioned a large HVAC system cleaning project to be completed within 3 years.

New York State has mold laws for assessment and remediation. NYC not to be outdone by NY State, passed their own regulations. NY State is not actively enforcing their mold laws. Loopholes in NY State mold laws permit property owners to perform their own assessment and remediation; while NYC does not. NYC DEP requires notice of remediation before a job, and then notice of clearance within 1 week of completion. ATC is a NYS certified training provider for mold classes. Mold Assessor’s must attend a 4 day course. NY State dictates both the curriculum and the amount of time to be spent on each subject. ATC created and administers an approved examination for their course. There is a significant difference between training providers. While ATC has deep field experience and wisdom that is passed on to their students, other training providers do not.

ATC has a new NYC contract to perform mold inspections, most likely visual only.

NYC is committed to energy efficiency. The Empire State Building reduced energy consumption by 40% by installing new windows, etc.; the law may require even more energy reduction. Energy reduction has intended consequences on IEQ, not just air. Tightening buildings causes a buildup of airborne contaminants.

In 2015 there was a high profile Legionella outbreak in the Bronx with 136 confirmed cases and 10 deaths. NYC and NYS both have regulations on cooling towers and Legionella. Legionella originates in city water supply. City water companies are permitted to conduct their own Legionella testing. Experts estimate that cooling towers are responsible for only about 5% of the Legionella cases. Seasonal housing is prone to Legionella amplification because water doesn’t circulate.

Is critical of the 50 CFU per ML cutoff level cited by the NAS as needing immediate remediation. It depends on the mode of transmission is it a humidifier or a cooling tower? What are the outdoor conditions: overcast, RH, wind speed, direction?


  • AIHA 2nd edition Green Book was recently released. 80% of the book is either new or substantially changed. The book has been dedicated to Phil Morey.
  • The 2015 AIHA Legionella Guideline is being updated and expanded.
  • The 2005 AIHA PRV is undergoing revision.
  • The 7th Edition of Patty’s Industrial Hygiene is being revised. Jack is honored to have been asked to write the IAQ Chapter.

Roundup with Restoration Industry Global Watchdog:  Pete Consigli

  • Mike McGuinness and Jack Springston are IAQ pioneer’s who served on AIHA’s original IAQ subcommittee.
  • Building science isn’t construction management.
  • The public is impacted by the work we do.
  • Isaac Newton- “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.”
  • George Santayana- “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

Upcoming Industry Events:

April 14-17, 2020, New Orleans, Louisiana

https://www.restorationindustry.org/general/custom.asp?page=2020ConventionExpo  April 14-17

Z-Man signing off

Trivia Question:

Name the NYC Governmental Agency that first issued guidelines on mold remediation in the early 1990s?

Trivia Answer:

NYC Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene