Archive: Jul 2019

IMC Welcomes Khristian Toolan

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KT Headshot
Interior Maintenance Company is pleased to announce the newest addition to our Sales Team, Khristian Toolan. Khristian joined the IMC family in late March with a background spanning over 10 years in emergency cleaning and restoration services. She is a licensed Property and Casualty Insurance Agent as well as an IICRC certified Water Damage Restoration professional. Khristian is the current Executive Chair for the Ambassador Committee of the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce and was named Ambassador of the Year for 2019. She is Co-Chair of the Membership Committee for Delaware’s IFMA Chapter and a member of the Commercial Industrial Realty Council. She volunteers with Easter Seals and serves on several committees with Habitat for Humanity.

Khristian is married with two children and has a rambunctious Boxer named Odie. She loves boating on the Chesapeake Bay and was First Lady of Sue Haven Yacht Club in 2017. She is on the Queen of the Chesapeake Pageant Committee and is a social member of Maryland Yacht Club. When she isn’t looking at a job site, you may find her out on her jet ski or on the family’s boat, the “Toolan Around”.

Khristian is focused on providing her clients with exemplary customer service. With so many contractors competing for work, she believes that the customer experience can be lost in the mayhem. Khristian is responsive and mindful of the need as well as the value of IMC services. She stays abreast of industry information/technology and is continually building strong relationships. Khristian is proud to be part of the Interior Maintenance Company family and looks forward to many years of developing her network and client base.

The Best Ways to Prevent Combustible Dust Explosions

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Accident at a steel mill
Combustible dust explosions are deadly and devastating to workers, businesses and communities who experience this sudden damage to property, and in several cases, loss of life. Workers in manufacturing plants around the country and even the world go to work at plants and factories every day, not realizing that the materials they handle can create dust that explodes and can hurt them, even organic material like flour and sugar. These unsuspecting substances create dust particles that can ignite and cause serious harm. Don’t let this happen to your business.

Educate Yourself and Your Employees
According to an alarming 2014 New York Times article, the chairman of the U.S. Chemical Safety Board reported that from 2008 to 2012, there were 50 combustible dust accidents that contributed to 29 fatalities and 161 injuries. This gripping reality shows that companies need to be informed about all aspects of “danger dust” and how to keep these tragedies from happening in the first place. A wide variety of work environments that generate dust are susceptible for these types of accidents, including tire manufacturing, plastics and fertilizers.

To keep your employees and property safe from potential harm, make sure your manufacturing plant is “in the know” about industry best practices and requirements for handling combustible dust, such as the NFPA 652 Standard on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dust. This regulatory document will help your company take proactive measures to keep combustible dust explosions from taking place.

Don’t Fan the Flame
One preventative measure you can institute right away is to get rid of things in your workplace that are known to ignite combustible dust in the first place. There are certain risk factors that can increase the probability of a combustible dust explosion. You can help to escape deadly dust dangers by keeping dusty residue materials away from heat, flame and friction or any type of inflammatory source.

The way combustible materials generate dust in your facility can be a risk factor as well. Dust-generating activities, like sieving and blasting can increase the possibility of dust buildup in your manufacturing plant. It has to go somewhere, and hopefully it’s not an excessive amount that spells danger for you and your staff.

In addition, avoid creating a recipe for disaster by not putting all of the ingredients of dust danger together in one formula: combustible dust, heat, air, concentrated dust area and the right dust particle distribution can provide a dangerous mixture of flammable dust.

Make Dust Inspections the Norm
Although it’s not a cure all preventative measure, regular dust inspections can go a long way to keep your employees and facility safe from dust disasters. Surprisingly, it takes less than 1/32 of an inch of dust to cause dust combustion in your plant. Use best practice safeguards to keep a close eye on these dust levels to ensure they don’t lead to a fire hazard.

Through education about dust danger safeguards, avoiding inflammatory dust particle conditions and regular monitoring, you’ll be on your way to avoid combustible dust explosions at your facility.

What’s That Smell Coming From Your Commercial HVAC

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What’s That Smell Coming From Your Commercial HVAC
If you’ve noticed a lingering odor stemming from your commercial HVAC, you’re probably not the only one. Smelly HVACs produce a stale, smelly air quality that is unpleasant and uninviting. Troubling odors, such as mold or bathroom-related smells that are around all of the time can be hard for both employees and customers to get past. There are several possible reasons for your disturbing commercial HVAC smells that need to be determined so your customers don’t continue to have a negative experience when they visit your establishment.

Getting to the source of your commercial establishment odor problems is half the battle. Once you determine the smell is coming from your commercial HVAC, which is designed to circulate good quality air in buildings, getting the odor under control has to do with the airflow. The key is to get the bad air out, and let the good quality, fresh air flow in.

If the odor is localized in your restrooms, for instance, commercial HVACs should have an effective exhaust fan component that pulls out more of the bad air and pushes in fresh, clean air into the bathroom. This necessary negative airflow will help to keep the odor localized so the smelly air quality will not seep into other areas of your commercial space and make customers question whether they should shorten their stay or find another business to frequent.

Commercial kitchens need a similar type of negative air pressure ventilation to keep strong food odors from spreading throughout the restaurant, school, or healthcare facility. Exhaust fans are very beneficial tools used to combat tough smells, but a good working HVAC system works to move air to where it should and should not be within commercial spaces so customers can breathe good, healthy air. Smoky kitchens with strong, lingering food smells can be a source of irritation for customers, including those who suffer with Asthma and other types of breathing problems.

HVACs are supposed to control and neutralize odors, not create them, so these types of smells mean that your HVAC isn’t working properly, and it needs to be diagnosed and serviced by a licensed HVAC professional. If there are any blockages in the circulation system, the HVAC air will not move as it should and keep odors at bay. A commercial heating, ventilation and air conditioning system needs maintenance to make sure it is operating effectively to produce the negative air flow necessary to treat stubborn odors in commercial areas that produce potent odors that you don’t want to permeate the building.

Musty, moldy or other types of strong odors coming from your HVAC are sure indications that there is something wrong with the way your system functions. Treat your air ventilation system at the source to give your employees and customers the pleasant airflow and experience they should expect when they spend time in your commercial space.