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Rubberized Flooring in Gyms and Other Facilities in Puerto Rico May Produce Mercury Vapors

Zimmetry Environmental provides air and material testing services to identify mercury and other potentially hazardous substances.

Bayamon, Puerto Rico – WEBWIRE

Even low level exposure to mercury over time can be a health threat.

Certain kinds of rubberized flooring that were used in the past in school gymnasiums, multi-purpose rooms, cafeterias and possibly even in classrooms, are known to have the potential to off-gas mercury vapors during every day use.
In fact, just this past August, South Carolina’s The Island Packet published a report about the discovery of mercury vapors by a local school district in four of its facilities. The discovery occurred when a rubberized gym floor was being replaced at one of the district’s schools. A contractor is said to have informed school administrators of the potential for mercury vapors from that type of flooring. Tests were then conducted that reportedly discovered mercury in the air at four of the district’s gyms. 
In 2015, schools in several small towns in Arizona were found to have similar issues. That resulted in a statewide survey that determined a third of Arizona school districts had the potential for this type of flooring to be present in their schools. Other states have also investigated mercury exposure concerns due to this same type of gym flooring.
“Beginning in the 1960s, until its use was discontinued decades later because of exposure concerns, mercury-catalyzed polyurethane flooring was commonly installed in school gymnasiums and other athletic facilities,” said Harry Pena, President of Zimmetry Environmental. “These floors were used throughout the United States, including Puerto Rico and other neighboring islands across the Caribbean. Due to the number of schools and athletic facilities that had mercury-catalyzed polyurethane flooring installed, its presence continues to be an underlying concern in many places.”
Even low level exposure to mercury over time can be a health threat. Fortunately, the environmental and indoor air quality (IAQ) professionals at Zimmetry Environmental are experts at testing for mercury and other heavy metals from material and air samples. If test results come back positive, the flooring could be removed or increased ventilation to the impacted areas could help to mitigate exposure concerns.
To learn more about Zimmetry Environmental and their building science, indoor air quality (IAQ), environmental, or compliance testing and consulting services, please visit, call (787) 995.0005, or email .
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, asbestos, lead-based paint, Phase I ESAs, and general environmental consulting services.

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 Puerto Rico
 Indoor Air Quality
 Air Testing
 Occupational Health

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