BISMARCK – Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring is cautioning home and business owners, and especially agricultural producers to have all-flood and moisture-damaged buildings inspected and properly treated for mold.

"Homes have priority, but other buildings such as shops, quonsets, barns and wooden granaries also need special care and consideration when they are inspected,” Goehring said. “At least one side of a barrier wall may need to be exposed for inspection for mold, and appropriate anti-fungal agents may need to be applied.”

Goehring also said professionals contracted to clean out mold must be properly certified in the home and industrial category or working under the direct supervision of a certified applicator. They must also meet state and local licensed requirements and use registered products.

Certified applicators are issued cards by the North Dakota State University Extension Service Pesticide Training and Certification Program, indicating they are properly trained and have proved financial responsibility. Persons wishing to be certified should contact the program at (701) 231-7180 or ndsu.pesticide@ndsu.edu or their county extension agent.

The NDSU program also has an online database at http://ndsupesticide.org/ to check on the certification status of certified applicators.

Goehring said home and business owners who conduct their own mold clean-up should take all precautions for their health and safety and should follow the label instructions on any products they use.

“Please apply all products, such as fungicides and disinfectants, for destroying, inhibiting or preventing mold growth according to label instructions,” Goehring said.

Goehring said it is especially important that products are mixed and applied according to directions, and that users wear all personal protective equipment and clothing specified on the label.

“The EPA website has valuable information on the safe and proper procedure for removing mold,” Goehring said. “Additional flood recovery information can b found on the NDSU Extension Service website.

Th EPA information can be found at www.epa.gov/iedmold1/index.html; the NDSU Extension website is www.ag.ndsu.edu/flood.