Pesky mold and mildew invades Nash no more

The Gannon University’s Nash Library has officially concluded a five-week maintenance program to remove mold that had previously been identified to cover between 25,000 and 30,000 books that help to make up its extensive collection.

The library is now considered to be mold-free and is waiting the final clean bill of health from the industrial hygienist that oversaw the program.

The program was mostly paid for by one of Gannon’s insurance companies; however, the university did have to pay a deductible for the cleaning service.

Ken Brundage, director of the Nash Library, said that the clean-up program was very extensive in order to ensure that workers were getting every affected area.

The cleanup crew would spend significant amounts of time removing the mold in one area and they were not allowed to move on to another area until the industrial hygienist was able to check the air quality and run other miscellaneous tests to ensure that area was mold-free.

This procedure was followed until each and every area of the library was found to have been free and clear of the pesky mildew problem.

Just because the program is done, however, doesn’t mean that the library isn’t taking further preventative actions to ensure that mold doesn’t find its way back on the shelves.

According to Brundage, the staff continues to clean any and all books being returned to the library in order to make sure that they didn’t miss any books that may have been checked out during the five-week cleansing period.

Many students weren’t pleased when the mold was first discovered. Other students, though, like senior entrepreneurship major Pete SantaMaria, understand some of the hardships that come with older buildings like the Nash Library.

“I understand why people were grossed out,” he said, “but Nash is an older building and older buildings need maintenance.

“This is just part of the process of taking care of older buildings and I think they handled it as well as they could have.”

It wasn’t just the cleanup that SantaMaria was satisfied with, though; it was also with how the staff handled regular library activity in the wake of the lengthy process. He said that when he needed to check out a few books damaged by the mold, it only took the staff a couple of days to get the books cleaned up for him and ready to be checked out.

Now that the mold is all cleaned up, Brundage is confident that there shouldn’t be any mold spotted on the racks any time soon.

“We’re hopeful that the clean-up was successful,” he said, “but the true test will be when it’s hot and humid in the summer.

“Hopefully we won’t see another outbreak,” he said, “but we’ll cross that bridge if we come to it.”


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