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Mystery Odor Sickens People in Los Angeles


The indoor environmental quality (IEQ) professionals at Clark Seif Clark (CSC) provide testing services to help identify and resolve indoor odor complaints.

In early January the Associated Press reported that a mysterious odor in a downtown Los Angeles medical clinic sent 17 people to the hospital. A hazardous materials team that responded to the scene searched the clinic and surrounding area, but was unable to locate what had caused the odor. The sick individuals reported nausea and other health symptoms.

The previous month CNN reported that the United Nations Security Council’s quarters and the General Assembly were also evacuated because of a suspicious odor. It was later determined that the odors were not harmful and may have been caused by a combination of sulfur and methane resulting from high river tides and sewage.

These are just a few high profile examples of the damage and concern that can be created by mystery odors. Complaints of strange odors in indoor environments are a common occurrence. In many circumstances these mysterious odors may be caused by housekeeping issues, cooking odors or smells created by manufacturing processes in industrial facilities. Others times the cause may be much more complex.

Clark Seif Clark, a leading provider of indoor air quality (IAQ) and environmental testing services, are experts at identifying and resolving odor complaints. “Fugitive odors, both pleasant and offensive, can wreak havoc on a business. Mysterious odors often reduce worker productivity, send customers packing or injure occupants,” reported Derrick A. Denis, V.P. Indoor Environmental Quality at CSC. “Evaluating the risks posed by a mystery smell centers on identifying both the source and pathways of the odor. IAQ investigators, such as CSC, rely on advanced instrumentation, state-of-the-art laboratory analysis, expertise in building construction, foundations in science and a broad diversity of project experience”

To learn more about odor investigations or other indoor air quality and environmental services please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118.

About Clark Seif Clark (CSC)
CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both the public and private sectors address environmental issues. CSC is a leading provider of these services with multiple offices along the western seaboard and southwest. The company believes in science-based protocols and has a strong background in engineering, making them the preferred environmental consultants to healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.


 Indoor Air Quality

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