The Acronym HVAC has various meanings in different countries so I want to make clear in which context HVAC it is used in this Article:
It stands for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Condition and therefore is referring to these technologies whenever it is mentioned in this Article.
Talking about each particular of these Technologies, all of them are positively connoted as they add comfort to the daily life.
Smaller private household units usually are manufactured as sealed systems that either work or otherwise get exchanged in case of malfunctions or breakdowns.
This looks differently when heating systems, ventilators, or air-conditioners are installed as large units in Public Buildings, Manufacturing Plants or Hotels and similar housing structures.
The American Legion Convention Incident.
In July 1976 the American Legion held its annual convention to celebrate The US. Bicentennial in Philadelphia, PA where the founding Fathers signed the Declaration Of Independence exactly 200 years before.
When more than 200 of the attendees in the Bellevue – Stafford Hotel got sickened and 34 killed by a then mysterious lung disease, public reaction grew into the dimension of a National catastrophe. As the more than 10 percent of all the Legionnaires attending the conference got affected.
What happened that struck former warriors, who survived risky assignments in WW I and WW II, who fought in Europe and the Pacific, in the war theaters of Korea and Vietnam only to lose their lives at a peaceful city that stood for all the ideals they defended in their missions?
For sure, individual people died before of similar symptoms but causes obviously were misdiagnosed.
However, the sheer amounts of nearly a quarter of a thousand people with different health histories coming from all corners of the country all of a sudden got hit by the outbreak of the same mysterious disease.
The positive standing, the Members of the American Legion earned throughout the Nation supported surely the rush of the combined efforts to find the cause.
At the beginning of the search, the only common denominator of all these people was the fact that they convened more or less accidentally at the Bellevue-Stafford Hotel at the same time and breathed the same air.
Health- as well as criminal agencies like NIH and FBA, turned the Hotel upside down in the next half year to find the source of the evil. Various possibilities as far as a terrorist act have been pondered. (Only imagine the hysteria which would have come up after 9/11).
It took until January 1977 researchers found the causative agent, a previously unknown bacterium. They named it subsequently Legionella.
Seldom was the hunt for a living organism opened with so many people and resources.
The bacteria were found in aerosols spread throughout the interconnected air-condition system. The AC system at the Stafford must have worked day in and day out to cope with the damp summer temperatures at the Atlantic coast and the warmth produced by 2000 People. It was analyzed that the Central air-condition did not stop a single minute throughout the conference hours, so tons of aerosols containing the deadly bacterium where pushed all over the hotel spaces.
As usual when an enemy is located, all relevant institutions will hunt it without mercy.
In the next years the strictest regulations were established to kill the smallest fragment of the potential cause. No chemical agent was destructive enough as cleaning and repair devices.
Maintenance personnel were trained to handle aggressive and skin irritant chemicals, inhaling hazardous vapors of chlorine and toxic alcohols to make sure no danger is coming anymore from all HVAC systems throughout the country.
As so often it was a shooting with cannons at sparrows.
The Opera Hotel case Last year in NYC
Last year another outbreak of Legionella in the Air-condition at the Opera House hotel in NYC brought the attention back to the permanent problem of Air conditioners. Twelve visitors of this large Hotel died and more than 120 all residents and employees showed symptoms of severe lung infections.
However, all these cases always come up to the public attention if people stay long enough at the same place where they were exposed to the bacteria. The outbreak and symptoms of Legionella show only after an incubation time from a few days up to two weeks.
The problem that infected persons have is that they may at the outbreak of the cause already be far away from the location of the pollution.
The symptoms are flu-like, with more or less high temperatures. Infected persons show chills, dry cough and like we all do, they try with over the counter available medicines first, before they see a doctor. Nevertheless, even these medical professionals, faced with a singular sick person might start the wrong treatment. Two weeks of incubation are in these busy days a long time and people just do not anymore remember exactly what they did or where they stayed two weeks ago.
Another malice of Legionella infections is the fact that these bacteria love a climate where water is warmed up sprays its pathogenic material into the environment.
It is discussed by health authorities that there is an over average of cases which are unreported. Just by the fact that there are only a few persons involved at a time.
They are unreported not out of bad intention, just because they happen in too many particular cases. Even the air-condition systems in family homes might have caused many death over the existence of Air Conditioners.
And after they are detected like in Philadelphia in 1976 or in NYC last year who is the culprit?
The manufacturer of the AC System? They will claim, and they are right, that they installed a Legionella free hardware. In addition, they have in presales periods not so much interest to overcomplicate issues which might bring a potential sales in danger.
The installation firm? Did they instruct the purchaser well enough? They usually let the customer sign an installment protocol that contains a few lines about microbial hazard.
The client? The attention span is only short and if the installer can prove that, the system is delivering the desired cooling throughout the place, maintenance issues become secondary.
There is no doubt that a service contract with an experienced service firm, which has qualified and engaged maintenance technicians is the best way to handle the Microbial hazard of HVAC systems.
Legal issues are excluded both for the companies in the presales and installation of the system.
The client like the owner of the buildings where people convene like in Hotels or recreation homes or homes for the elderly will always be the first ones to handle all the inconveniences with incidences even in smaller forms like in Philadelphia in 1976 or in New York last year. He might be the first one charged for damages.
Service firms up to the point might be deterred to address the approach of microbial decontamination with the necessary care. It has several handling problems just due to the materials used to prevent or clean such forms or an invisible enemy.
Chlorine, bromine, sulfur dioxide. benzoates, aldehydes or nitrites sounding to the untrained citizen like deriving from the cabinets of a Mad Chemist. Definitely they do not sound easy to be carried around in highly populated areas in a maintenance vehicle and the service technicians are often unaware and trained about handling strong acting chemicals.
But there are good news: The magic word today is Nano Solutions.
Nano is already widely understood as Small, Minuscule, and safe.
The fact is that Nano-Bactericides are now on the market. They have found already wide use as replacements for chlorines, quants and other cheap disinfectants.
To mention only the use in Food processing, Rinsing of machinery and equipment in this industry are some key words.
Farmers use Nano disinfectant product in food and vegetable processing and even to protect their animals.
The transportation industry disinfects with Nano products Tanks, Storage containers and their vehicles.
What does make these products so much favored by key industries?
It derives from modified bioflavonoids, All products involved are naturally organic and none of them is toxic.
Its spectrum of microbial activity involves the destruction of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria; it destructs virus as well as mold, fungi and yeasts.
It is non Mutagenic, a concern coming up now with many chemicals being accused to change genetic codes. It is non-carcinogenic non corrosive, non-tainting and not volatile.
Its action is simple: it attacks the cell walls of the above mentioned microorganisms.
HVAC maintenance technicians were asked if they had such a product available with the features mentioned above immediately conceded to build it in to their maintenance procedures.
Extensive handling protocols for the HVAC components are already available.
Their major concerns having to deal with aggressive chemicals did not inspire The HVAC Service industry to use these as often as requested and necessary.
A Nano Product with the features mentioned above would allow them a better service for their clients. And not to forget for themselves.
See www.agrihit.com to find more out about a product which can safely carry your maintenance efforts into the immediate future. Be the first in between your competitors who is offering its clients a secure and safe method serving their in-house HVAC components.