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Testing for Tobacco and Other Smoke Residues and the New HUD Smoke-Free Housing Rule

The environmental and industrial hygiene professionals at Clark Seif Clark provide indoor testing to identify environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and other smoke residues.

Chatsworth, CA – WEBWIRE

HUD’s new rule is an important step for protecting people from tobacco smoke and residues, but this is not just an issue in public housing.

On July 21st of this year, a final rule from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requiring Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) to implement smoke-free policies went into full effect. The new rule has a major impact on thousands of PHAs and the over 1 million households in the U.S. that live in public housing units.
According to the new rule, each Public Housing Agency must implement a smoke-free policy banning the use of prohibited tobacco products in all public housing living units, indoor common areas in public housing and in PHA administrative office buildings. The smoke-free policy must also extend to all outdoor areas up to 25 feet from the public housing and administrative office buildings. This rule is meant to improve indoor air quality in the housing; benefit the health of public housing residents, visitors and PHA staff; reduce the risk of catastrophic fires; and lower overall maintenance costs.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classified secondhand smoke as a Class A known carcinogen back in 1992. In 2006, the U.S. Surgeon General concluded that there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nationwide, secondhand smoke exposure contributes to approximately 41,000 deaths among nonsmoking adults and 400 deaths in infants each year. Secondhand smoke causes stroke, lung cancer and coronary heart disease in adults. Children who are exposed to secondhand smoke are at increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome, acute respiratory infections, middle ear disease, more severe asthma, respiratory symptoms and slowed lung growth. 
“HUD’s new rule is an important step for protecting people from tobacco smoke and residues, but this is not just an issue in public housing,” said Franco Seif, President at Clark Seif Clark (CSC). “The CDC reports that about 80 million people in the U.S. live in multi-unit housing and each year an estimated 28 million multi-unit housing residents are exposed to secondhand smoke in their home or apartment that came from somewhere else in their building.”
As smoke-free policies become the norm in government-subsidized and private housing, along with most hotels and other rental properties, testing for tobacco smoke residues before people sign a lease or by property managers to ensure tenants have not smoked, is becoming ever more common. At Clark Seif Clark, their building science professionals offer testing services for environmental tobacco smoke, smoke and nicotine residues, marijuana smoke contamination, and a wide range of other indoor environmental quality issues. They have even sponsored an educational video about HUD’s new smoke-free public housing rule that can be seen at:
To learn more about this or other air quality, building science, industrial hygiene, environmental, health and safety services, please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118. 
About Clark Seif Clark
CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both public and private sectors address indoor air quality, occupational, environmental, and health and safety (EH&S) 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 industrial clients, healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.

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