In response to the rising popularity of Spray Foam (SPF) insulation, researchers at University of Massachusetts announced they are conducting a study to evaluate exposures associated with the use of products that contain reacting chemicals – think isocyanates and epoxies– and controls that reduce exposures to these chemicals in construction during the installation of actual spray foam insulation installs in houses throughout Massachusetts.
The partnership is with Mass Energy Lab Insulation, a Boston-based insulation company that designs and installs insulation solutions in homes. As part of the study, Mass Energy is giving the university access to numerous job sites and insulation personnel to assess exposures to and develop recommendations for safer work practices for installers, bystanders and occupants.
This unique study is headed by Principal Investigators Dhimiter Bello, ScD and Susan Woskie, PhD, said: “SPF is an excellent insulating material. The chemistry and technology of spray foams has improved considerably over the years and so have industry best practices, adherence to which enable safe foam applications. However, field exposure data and field observations to date are limited. Good data will allow us to make informed decisions on best work practices and controls, so that we can reap the benefits of the technology, while keeping everyone – the installer, the helpers, and the homeowners – safe.”
The study, which is federally funded, will help homeowners and installers alike feel like they are part of a “safer workplace and environment.”
“It’s about working together to create a seamless, safe insulation install,” said a Mass Energy Lab Insulation spokesperson.
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