Nicholas Flooding

To our community in Texas and Louisiana, we hope you are safe. If you have any questions, the TX-CERA hotline is being monitored (669)237-2243, and we have resources available online at txcera.org. Here are a couple of links to help get started:

https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/Flood_FIMA_Fact_Sheet_advice_salvaging.pdf?fbclid=IwAR1i5lz0kbnPScET7F-KbrczzuXCyc23F8boCs0ScmWt_-twy5daADoLSXE

https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/2020-05/SalvagingFamilyValuables_sept2018.pdf?fbclid=IwAR2NO6j-I1G4tOgsgxMzJGq5qHlWhnuiYMTC2hnMCIVsJQ1Dy_xR98b52dE

As you return to your institutions, remember that your safety comes first. Be sure to have PPE ready to wear and keep an eye out for pests that may have been brought in by flooding.

The Fungus Trolley

Does an object in your collection show signs of a fungal infestation, but can’t be removed from display? Or perhaps your conservation facility is off-site, or simply does not have the treatment space available? On page 3 of this 2010 IIC newsletter, conservators from the Islamic Arts Museum of Malaysia describe the development of the Fungus Trolley, which allows them to treat artifacts safely in the display areas.

2020 Hurricane Season Preparations Webinar for U.S. Gulf Coast Cultural Institutions

Join us for an overview of the 2020 U.S. Gulf Coast hurricane season, preparedness and response. Dan Reilly, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at National Weather Service Houston/Galveston, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will give an update on the upcoming hurricane season and hurricane preparedness with content about the specific risks from wind, rain, flood- ing, and tornadoes that are associated with hurricanes in the U.S. Gulf Coast. Jason Church, Chief of Technical Services at the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) will discuss preparedness for cultural institutions. Melody D. Gayeski, PMP, American Red Cross, Disaster Relief Leadership Volunteer, Central and South Texas will discuss American Red Cross Pandemic Protocols. Steve Pine, Senior Conservator of Decorative Arts, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and Texas Collections Emergency Resource Alliance, (TX-CERA) will moderate this webinar that will be hosted by NCPTT.

Thursday, August 20, 2020
10:00 AM CDT to 12:00 Noon CDT

For free registration: https://nsula.webex.com/webappng/sites/nsula/meeting/info/55f007c39f814297a5815485e97a3d76

Partners: Texas Collections Emergency Resources Alliance TX-CERA

Contributors:

Alliance for Response -South Florida https://www.culturalheritage.org/resources/emergencies/alliance-for-response/networks/south-florida

APOYOnline – Association for Heritage Preservation of the Americas www.apoyonline.org

Florida Association of Museums www.flamuseums.org

Houston Arts Alliance: https://www.houstonartsalliance.com/

LYRASIS Preservation Serviceshttps://www.lyrasis.org/services/Pages/Digital-and-Preservation-Services.aspx

National Heritage Responders https://www.culturalheritage.org/resources/emergencies/national-heritage-responders

New Orleans Preservation Coalition https://www.nolapreservationcoalition.org/

Performing Arts Readinesshttps://performingartsreadiness.org/

Texas Historical Commissionhttps://www.thc.texas.gov

Let’s Talk Mold

There are numerous resources online that provide information and guidance on how to “deal” with mold.

This is a brief synthesis.

Mold grows on organic materials in suitable conditions: relative humidity higher than 65%, oxygen and lack of air circulation, temperatures preferably in the range of 50 – 95°F. Mold decomposes the organic material (something we are usually trying to safe) and produces substances that can cause illnesses and allergic reactions.

During intervention on a mold outbreak:

  • make sure to protect yourself first: wear nitrile gloves and make sure mold does not come into contact with your skin; wash hands after removing gloves; do not eat and drink in an environment where mold is present; wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) such as FFP3 dust mask and goggles, up to respirators and body suits in case of large outbreaks;
  • try to identify and address the cause(s) of the mold outbreak;
  • create some air circulation, using fans;
  • use dehumidification equipment to reduce the relative humidity below 65%;
  • use HEPA vacuum to remove mold growth;
  • consult a conservator for appropriate of intervention depending on substrate/artifact.

In case of symptoms such as skin rash or asthma, stop immediately and consult your doctor.

For a list of symptoms, you can consult the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. (2019). Mold Allergy: https://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/allergies/mold-allergy