Residents of Puerto Rico Reminded that E. coli Hazards are not Just a Food Safety Concern
Zimmetry Environmental provides testing and consulting services to identify potential indoor environmental pathogens following water damage.
Anytime there is flooding or sewer overflows, E. coli and other intestinal bacteria such as Salmonella and Shigella can be introduced into a home or building.
Most people are familiar with the large group of bacteria known as Escherichia coli (E. coli). The organism’s name brings to mind safety concerns with food pathogens and outbreaks of foodborne illnesses to many.
E. coli are a type of bacteria found in the environment and the intestines of people and animals. Although most strains of E. coli are harmless and some are an important part of a healthy intestinal tract, others can cause severe illnesses. Some strains can cause diarrhea, urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other conditions.
Zimmetry Environmental, Puerto Rico’s leading indoor environmental quality consultants, are also reminding the island’s residents that E. coli is also a health and safety concern whenever water damage has occurred in a property due to flooding or a sanitary sewer overflow (SSO). “Some types of E. coli are used as markers for water contamination, so one might hear about E. coli being found in drinking water or in a flooded property, which depending on the type may be harmful and definitely indicates contamination,” said Harry Pena, President of Zimmetry Environmental. “The pathogenic strains of E. coli can be transmitted through adulterated water or food, or through contact with infected animals, people or contaminated surfaces. Anytime there is flooding or sewer overflows, E. coli and other intestinal bacteria such as Salmonella and Shigella can be introduced into a home or building.”
Special precautions and personal protective equipment (PPE) should be used by anyone who enters a flooded property to prevent coming into contact with E. coli and other pathogens. Many of these same precautions and hygiene practices should be put in place when attempting to remove flood waters, disposing of water damaged materials and when performing repairs to a water damaged property.
Zimmetry recently sponsored an educational video about potential E. coli hazards that can be seen at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4WejO3aLok
To learn more about Zimmetry Environmental and their environmental, building science and indoor air quality services, please visit www.zimmetry.com, call (787) 995.0005 or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
About Zimmetry Environmental
Since 2002, Zimmetry Environmental has been providing environmental consulting services to building owners and managers, architects, engineers, EHS professionals and Fortune 500 companies. The company is based in Puerto Rico and provides services across the Caribbean and Central America. The professionals at Zimmetry offer environmental compliance, indoor air quality (IAQ), asbestos, lead-based paint, Phase I ESAs and general environmental consulting services.
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