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Five-Alarm Downtown Fire Displaces Nearby Residents and Raises IEQ Concerns

EMSL Analytical, Inc. provides testing services, sampling supplies and test kits to identify smoke residues, mold, asbestos, lead and other potential exposure hazards.

Raleigh, NC – WEBWIRE

Last month, a massive five-alarm fire in downtown Raleigh destroyed a large apartment complex that was under construction. High-rise office and residential buildings nearby were also evacuated, but those building were saved from the flames.

According to media reports, the surrounding buildings in the congested area suffered water, fire and smoke damage. The sprinkler system in at least one of the neighboring building was set off, causing significant water damage throughout the large structure.

Water damage in a high-rise can impact large areas of the buildings as the water seeks its way to the lowest level. This type of water damage can be visible, but also often occurs out of sight behind walls, ceilings and under floors. Moisture that remains for more than 48 hours often results in the growth of mold. Once mold begins to grow, even when it is in areas that are not visible, it can impact the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) of the building.

“Exposure to elevated levels of mold can trigger asthma in some people with the condition; cause allergies and respiratory concerns; and some types of mold can even cause opportunistic infections in people with a weakened or suppressed immune system,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Another concern in many buildings that have undergone water, smoke or fire damage is the possible presence of lead-based paints and asbestos-containing materials. Efforts to dry out and repair damage to a building could aerosolize these materials if the proper safety precautions have not been implemented.”

To protect workers, residents and building occupants after these types of incidents, EMSL Analytical, Inc. offers testing services for smoke residues, mold, lead, asbestos and other potentially hazardous materials. They provide all of the sampling supplies necessary and even offer indoor environmental quality test kits. This type of testing can also be instrumental for settling insurance claims and helping to ensure that all damages are properly addressed.

To learn more about EMSL’s IEQ testing services, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email . To access indoor environmental quality test kits, please visit  

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical, Inc. is one of the leading testing laboratories with over 40 locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP 797, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at for a complete listing of accreditations.  In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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