Potential Health Risks of Water Leaks, Flood, and Sewer Back-Up
There is a long list of potential health risks associated with water leaks, flooding, and sewer back-up that occur inside a home. In today’s blog we are going to briefly discuss some of these health risks. A complete and thorough look at every possible risk would be beyond the scope of this article.
The health risks associated with water leaks are typically not instantaneous but longer term. If the water leaks are not addressed adequately and the area totally cleaned up, then it becomes easy for mold and mildew to grow. Fungi can proliferate at a frightening rate, and often it is unseen, growing unchecked behind walls or under floors.
Some of these molds are extremely toxic and can quickly render a building unfit to live in. These effects would be magnified for people with allergies or with existing respiratory conditions such as COPD or asthma and also for the very young and the elderly.
Flooding can pose the risks mentioned above with the addition of other risks. When there is flooding, water passes over the ground and can pick up chemicals and bacteria which are then dissolved in the water.
So, then you will have the immediate risks of contamination with chemicals and/or infection from bacteria and viruses, such as those listed below.
The health risks of sewer back-up are very serious. They not only include a long list of bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and amoebas found in raw sewage, such as hepatitis and giardia, but there is also the immediate risks associated with sewer gas.
Sewer gas can contain ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, and even carbon monoxide, just to name a few. All of these gases are harmful or fatal in large doses. The problems with all the microorganisms are that they can enter breaks in the skin causing skin or systemic infections, or someone can touch their mouth or nose or eyes and cause even more damage.
If you are or have been affected by water leaks, flooding, or sewage back-up, please get some help from professionals who will be dressed appropriately for the bio-hazard risk. Get the water damage handled as soon as possible so you are not facing long-term problems.
This is our area of expertise, and we can diagnose and fix the problem for you. Please call us on the Lower Mainland at (604) 349-5325 if you are experiencing any of the problems noted above.
604FixLeak offers leak detection, plumbing repairs and restoration services in the Greater Vancouver area.
If you have any questions about this article or need some help with a leak in your home or office, call us today at (604) 349-5325.