Mold/Asbestos/Pest Protocol
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Mold/Asbestos/Pest Protocol

Jan 16, 2024

Mold and mildew are fairly common in the south. Mold spores can exist anywhere, are naturally present in the environment outdoors, and appear indoors for many reasons. If a student reports mold in his/her living area, DHRE and Housing Support staff will personally investigate. The ability to address concerns early serves to minimize the impact, both in addressing the issue and the follow up with residents. Health and safety are concerns that also require the attention of Environmental Health Services.

Students are encouraged to file a Fixmyroom request for all maintenance issues, including mold and mildew. In these cases, it is imperative that communication be consistent and clear. The following are the recommended steps in these situations.

NOTE: The assessment visit is to determine the situation. This may involve conversations with the residents in gaining information on the extent of the problem. All are cautioned not to make uninformed, unobserved, or generalized comments regarding the investigation to residents. This can lead to misunderstandings. Rather the facts are to be gathered and a timeline provided to the residents on when to expect an action plan.

EHS is to report its findings and recommendations to Housing Support, Housekeeping, and DHRE Facilities. A written assessment and recommendation is preferred.

NOTE: Required actions are determined by the EHS report recommendations.

Depending on the severity of the situation, Housing Support, Housekeeping, and DHRE Facilities are to coordinate the response, along with the Community Director on cleaning and feedback to residents.

NOTE: The Community Director ensures that direct communication with the residents is maintained, and that questions are properly addressed. When possible, direct conversation with residents is preferable, in that it permits interactive questioning and response. Students are to be continuously updated on the progress of the investigation.

If residents require temporary relocation, the Community Director, working with Assignments would accommodate this need. Safe rooms or vacant rooms may be options.

Maintaining a healthy indoor environment, including good indoor air quality, requires a joint effort by UNC faculty and staff; students; Environment, Health and Safety (EHS); and Facilities Services. No heating or air conditioning system can eliminate all pollen, dust, allergens or mold spores.

To reduce humid conditions and prevent microbial growth, good housekeeping practices and routine maintenance are necessary. Given a source of moisture, microbial growth (commonly referred to as mold) can grow just about anywhere within 24-48 hours. These conditions can be created by food, organic materials containing moisture, wet towels, water intrusion, or spills which are not cleaned up immediately.

When air quality concerns are reported, EHS will work with Housing Support as needed to perform student interviews, as a part of an indoor air quality investigation. We will then develop a plan to locate and remediate the sources of air quality concerns.

Report air quality concerns to EHS by calling 919-962-5507 or by contacting EHS online. EHS hours are Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Carolina Students can help by following the three C's: Cleaning, Climate and Communication.

Microbial, or mold, growth thrives in wet or humid conditions. Maintaining cleanliness in UNC building environments can assist in improving air quality and promoting a healthy living environment. Items such as excessive books, paper products, carpets, food, plush furniture or spilled drinks can be a medium for microbial growth. You are responsible for cleaning your personal items in your dorm.

Controlling room climate is essential to managing indoor air quality and comfort. Moisture, humidity and heat provide conditions that are favorable for microbial or mold growth.

Communication of any leaks or water intrusion to Housing Support is required immediately, as biological growth can occur in as early as 24-48 hours.

As a resident of UNC’s Campus Housing Community, we are informing you of the presence of asbestos-containing materials (ACM) in residence halls and campus buildings. As long as the building materials are in good condition, they do not present a health risk to residents.

Materials containing asbestos may include flooring, ceilings, walls, thermal system insulation on pipes and tanks and miscellaneous items. (Asbestos fibers have been used —and continue to be used— in a wide range of manufactured goods, including roofing shingles, ceiling and floor tiles, paper and cement products, textiles, coatings, and friction products such as automobile clutch, brake and transmission parts.)

Unsampled materials in buildings built prior to 1981 are presumed to contain asbestos unless sampling and analysis indicates otherwise. UNC maintains asbestos-containing building materials so they do not crumble and release fibers into the air. If you notice any damaged building materials within your room (or in any area), please contact your Community Director’s Office. Any damaged building material will be repaired immediately.

We ask that you:

UNC has an asbestos control policy and program to manage asbestos on campus. The University has a staff of accredited professionals at the Department of Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) who conduct building inspections, coordinate and supervise asbestos related construction activities, perform air monitoring and provide employee training. To review a copy of the policy and control program, please use the following link: .

The table below lists the residence halls that have been identified as having surfacing materials containing asbestos. If you have further questions in reference to this information, you may direct them to your area office. If you would like to review building specific testing information, you may contact EHS (962-5507) to make an appointment to review the reports.

Residence Hall

Asbestos Information

Hinton James

Spray-applied ceiling material and elastomeric coating on the walls beneath the multiple layers of paint.


Elastomeric coating on the walls beneath the multiple layers of paint.


Textured paint applied to the ceilings


Textured paint applied to the ceilings


Textured paint applied to the ceilings


Plaster material on the walls and ceilings


Plaster material on the walls and ceilings

Carolina Housing is lucky to have a large collection of residence halls with comforts for all. We are also fortunate to have a great Housing Support team to keep them maintained and cleaned. As good a job as they do, there is still the chance there will be an unwelcome visitor from time to time.

Fortunately, the University has a comprehensive system in place designed to rid the residence halls of the annoying intruders. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is “a process for achieving long-term, environmentally sound pest suppression and prevention through the use of a wide variety of technological and management practices.” It integrates housekeeping, maintenance, and pest control services to prevent pest problems by making the building less conducive to pest infestation.

Many people have the same initial reaction when there is a problem with pests – they want someone to come in and “nuke” the building with insecticides or other chemicals. With IPM, one of the benefits is that it controls pests while greatly reducing the exposure to pesticides. Under this process, pest problems are prevented by managing the facility environment to make it less conducive to pest infestation.

Strategies to correct conditions that foster pest problems are employed under IPM. Bait stations that contain gel bait and monitor boxes, which help identify what the problem insect is, are utilized. Then, when necessary, a more targeted application of the appropriate pesticide can be administered to eradicate the problem insect. This program is administered by certified personnel within UNC Housing Support.

A vital component of pest control is educating building occupants on the relatively simple steps that can be taken to proactively prevent problems with insects and create an environment where infestation is less likely. Whenever food is present, insects will always invite themselves in for a bite. Messy kitchens are a major reason ants and roaches make their way inside, so keeping all areas clean – sinks, floors, refrigerators, drawers, and cabinets is key. Wipe surfaces clean after eating and be sure not to leave dirty dishes behind. Food stored anywhere should be in airtight containers. Also, trashcans with food scraps or items such as banana peels or coffee grounds will attract gnats.

If your room or area in your building is in need of pest control services, please submit a FIX-MY-ROOM ticket or call 919-966-2471.