From plumbing leaks, sewage backup, and septic tank backup to natural disasters such as floods, water damage can affect the health of workers and employers in a business setting if it is not quickly dealt with. Water damage may often occur from plumbing problems, whether a blockage at the main sewer or an overflowing toilet that creates a foul smell.
A dirty water presence in a business requires immediate attention to prevent serious health hazards and water damage. Water damage may result in weakening the structures of a venture, poor quality indoor air, and unpleasant odors due to the growth of mildew and mold.
Here are some of the health and safety risks associated with water damage:
1. Damage to Essential Equipment and Property
Commercial spaces face various risks when water creeps in. Excess water can cause cracks in the slabs and shift foundations. Low-lying water may also stir up industrial chemicals and lubricants in the workplace, causing a serious risk for workers.
A business owner might have invested in high-value equipment such as centrifugal machinery, generators, sensitive computers, and hard drives, which water can damage. These pieces of equipment may pose a health and safety threat to the employees.
If an industrial building is exposed to high moisture and humidity, the high-voltage outlets and exposed wiring may suffer catastrophic failures. Electrocutions can also occur in the workplace due to water damage.
2. Mold Growth and Disease
Mold can grow in damp environments and be dangerous to workers’ health if exposed. If a business owner suspects that there might be mold, it would be best to find a local expert to come and examine the situation.
A professional will determine the extent of the situation and recommend how to deal with it. Some mold may not pose a risk to the business owner and the workers; however, the mold may be extremely dangerous and cause death in some cases.
3. It Has the Potential to Cause Injuries and May Contain Chemical Hazards
The water resulting from water damage may contain chemical hazards. If employees are exposed to contaminated water, they must seek medical attention. Symptoms such as skin irritation, vomiting, and difficulty breathing may be due to exposure to hazardous chemicals. Minor cuts, bruises, and significant injuries such as concussions and broken bones are also risks of water damage.
What happens if water damage is not dealt with quickly and thoroughly? Water-borne bacteria and mold can cause long-term health complications like asthma and other life-threatening infections. Employees may have mental issues if their working environment is uncomfortable and unsafe. Water damage weakens structural components and ruins belongings, so the workers will feel stressed and be exposed to slips and falls.
A company should find a local expert with the equipment, experience, and knowledge to help the business reach its feet quickly. Water restoration companies can perform structural drying, sewage cleanup, and leak detection after water damage events. They also have content cleaning for office fixtures and furniture.