THE INITIAL SITUATION
Secondhand smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, hundreds of them are toxic, and 70 have been identified as causing cancer. Nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke are at greater risk of heart disease. Infants and children who
are exposed experience more frequent
and severe asthma attacks, respiratory infections, ear infections, and sudden
infant death syndrome.
A long-term care facility in Canada also housed a busy daycare operation in the same building. For the senior residents of the facility who smoked, a designated smoking area was located outside the building and close enough that those with limited mobility had access. The door to the smoking area, however, was located in close proximity to the daycare space. Each time the door was opened and closed, secondhand smoke would infiltrate the area designated for the children, exposing them to harmful secondhand smoke.
Because infants and children are particularly vulnerable, it is crucial that HVAC systems are fully optimized with the most effective filtration solutions. According to the National Air Filtration Association (NAFA), air filters should have a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV), between 8 and 13.
The daycare facility contacted Filtration Group IAQ, Canada’s leading HVAC filtration manufacturer, to determine how to better protect against the airborne pollutants. On site, FG IAQ considered the position of the daycare center and the ingress/egress of the senior’s smoking area and confirmed that the filters in place were ineffective.
FG IAQ provided a comprehensive air quality assessment and recommendations for improved filtration using an industrial grade air purifier. Designed to handle high concentrations of chemicals and odors while delivering superior air quality for commercial spaces, FG IAQ’s AF1000 Heavy Duty Air Purifier was recommended and installed.
The 5-stage filtration system is versatile and cost-effective and offers enhanced protection from a wide range of airborne pollutants, including chemical compounds found in secondhand smoke. The daycare staff and children noticed the improvement and FG IAQ has confirmed that the indoor air quality is now at a safe and healthy level.