Severe weather poses increased risk of damaging mold in Maryland homes

According to predictions from many meteorologists and experts in the area, conditions are ripe in many parts of Maryland for all kinds of household damage. One of the biggest concerns is the production of toxic molds, which are prone to arise when extremely humid weather and periods of heavy rains make basements flood as the water table rises.

Maryland Insurance Commissioner Therese Goldsmith warned in the Insurance Journal, a bi-monthly publication from the Academy of Insurers, that homeowners should take every step to prevent molds by keeping basements ventilated, as a lot of the damage mold can cause is not covered by traditional flood insurance.

More importantly, the health risks associated with some molds could be very serious for families with young children, and, gone untreated, could result in lifelong complications, according to the Maryland Department of Health and Hygiene (MDHH).

Weather has been a serious issue throughout the Mid-Atlantic so far this summer, resulting in widespread power outages and four heat-related deaths this week alone, a local news source, the Baltimore Sun, reports. As the hurricane season amps up along the coast, Goldsmith predicts weather related deaths and property damage will be a larger issue this year compared to previous ones with the combination of high temperatures and a potential for major storm activity.

The MDHH provided residences with instructions on how to safely remove mold before it gets too serious for homeowners to handle without the help of professionals. These include tips to wear gloves, waterproof masks and goggles, keep the affected area well ventilated throughout the cleaning process and use non-ammonia based chemicals to tackle the mold.

Many toxic molds develop within walls in or in areas that are out of sight to homeowners, leaving them unknowingly exposed to health risks. Maryland residents should look into mold testing from a home inspection contractor at some point before the end of the summer to make sure they don't put their families at risk.