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UWMF SAFETY POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Subject: Water Damage Policy
Effective Date: 3/04 Approved: Mike Holman, Safety Coordinator
Supersedes Policy Date: 7/02 Revision #3
Distribution: All Safety Manuals
For the protection of all patients, visitors and employees, building materials that have
sustained water damage at any of the UW Medical Foundation sites will be immediately
addressed to prevent structural damage and microbial growth on affected materials.
POINT OF EMPHASIS:
1. Water soaked materials must be dried out within 48 hours to prevent microbial
2. Occupants affected by suspected microbial exposure should immediately notify their
supervisor and complete an Incident Report Form.
In the event of water damage, the following must occur as soon as possible:
1. Notify the Facilities Department and site supervisor.
2. If possible, find and stop the source of the leak. (If this cannot be done
safely, staff will wait for Facilities before unplugging equipment and risking
3. Move equipment and/or documents away from area being flooded.
4. Organize affected materials logically and label clearly for continued access.
5. If necessary, consult with the site supervisor on an alternative plan for
continuing departmental operations.
6. The Facilities Department will work with the site supervisor to do the following:
a) Use carpet extractors to vacuum up water.
b) Deploy commercial dehumidifiers and box/carpet fans to dry out
affected material. Some material may have to be removed, separated
and/or opened to improve the drying-out process. Examples include
removing baseboard, peeling back wallpaper or separating/opening
c) Investigate leak sources and make repairs accordingly.
d) If necessary, arrange a "Host Cleaning" for the carpet.
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e) Remove or clean any moldy building materials in accordance with EPA
or other recognized state guidelines for mold remediation.
Site supervisors will notify Administration and other internal departments of any loss
that may impact clinic operations. This person will also document time/material involved
to recover losses on an incident report form and meet with staff to hear feedback or
provide instruction as to next steps.
Facilities Manager will immediately implement recovery efforts as described above to
minimize losses. Facilities will also work with the site supervisor and Administration to
relocate staff, records or equipment to safe areas for the sake of continuing patient
Safety Coordinator will submit loss information to the Risk Manager and work with the
site supervisor and Facilities to resolve any indoor air quality or safety issues.
Employees will consult with the site supervisor and/or appropriate directors on
alternative plans to continue departmental operations.