6/12/2012

Raccoon Infestation Remediation Protocols

If a raccoon infestation occurs, two protocols are recommended based on the absence (Protocol A) or presence (Protocol B) of B. procyonis eggs, a parasite commonly found in raccoon droppings.

By Ralph E. Moon, Ph.D., CHMM, CIAQP

The most critical elements for handling a raccoon infestation are the elimination of food and hardening the exterior of the structure. Excess bird seed, dog and cat food, and fruit tree droppings all support feeding behavior that encourages young raccoons to depend on humans for food rather than the natural environment. The following recommendations will reduce urban food sources.

  • Never place pet food outside
  • Remove or empty bird feeders at night
  • Place metal flashing on objects that a raccoon could climb
  • Keep property free of hiding and nesting places
  • Secure all garbage can lids tightly. Where possible, place in a secure location like a shed or garage.
  • Construct secure food composting locations
  • Do not bury garbage
  • Do not provide excessive amounts of bird feed
  • Remove fallen fruit and berries
  • Clean barbeque grills after use
  • Do not intentionally feed raccoons under any circumstances

If an infestation occurs, two protocols are recommended based on the absence (Protocol A) or presence (Protocol B) of B. procyonis eggs, a parasite commonly found in raccoon droppings.

Protocol A: No Baylisascaris procyonis Eggs Found

Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)

HSA recommends use of Modified Level C personal protection equipment consisting of the following items. Level C - The concentration(s) and type(s) of airborne substance(s) is known and the criteria for using air purifying respirators are met.

  1. Full-face or half-mask, air purifying respirators (NIOSH approved)
  2. Hooded - resistant clothing (Tyvek overalls)
  3. Gloves (outer), chemical-resistant
  4. Boots (outer), chemical-resistant steel toe and shank
  5. Hard hat
  6. Face shield

Occupational Safety and Health

All work shall be performed in compliance with current federal and state regulations, including U.S. EPA, OSHA, state regulatory  and any other accepted state-of-the-art industry standards. The most recent edition of relevant regulations, standards, documents or codes shall be in effect including:

  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Regulations
  • U.S. EPA Worker Protection Rules,
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), U.S. Department of Labor, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor (Respiratory Protection), Title 29 CFR Section 1910.134
  • OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor (Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records), Title 29, CFR, Section 1910.20
  • OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor (Hazard Communication for the Construction Industry), Title 29, CFR, Section 1926.59

Any conflicts or overlap of these requirements shall be governed by the more stringent regulation or standard.

It is recommended that depending on the season and geographic location, the work be conducted when temperatures in the attic are below 90oF so as to minimize heat stress.

General Procedures

  • Identify a discrete access corridor to the attic and apply plastic sheeting secured to the floor with tape from the point of attic entry to the exit.
  • Install plastic containment curtains across doorways to isolate and prohibit others (e.g., nonworkers, neighbors, occupants, and children) from gaining entry to the access corridor.
  • Access the attic space, collect all feces and discolored insulation, and place the contents in sealed double plastic bags for disposal.
  • The remaining insulation in a 5 foot radius from the latrine may then either be bagged or vacuumed and taken out of the attic.
  • Where appropriate, urine or fecal-stained ceiling and gypsum board wall materials should be removed and replaced.
  • The exposed attic space (absent of insulation) should then be thoroughly HEPA vacuumed and sprayed with an anti-microbial treatment within the exposed area as a precaution.
  • New insulation should then be installed and a final cleaning performed.
  • Remove the containment curtains and floor covering.
  • Dispose of all PPE equipment appropriately.

 

Protocol B: Baylisascaris procyonis Eggs Found

Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) (Same as Protocol A)

Occupational Safety and Health (Same as Protocol A)

General Procedures

  • Install an appropriate warning sign in front of the home.
  • Install tape or physical barriers to isolate the work area and notify anyone gaining access to the property of potential contamination.
  • Identify a discrete access corridor to the attic and apply plastic sheeting secured to the floor with tape from the point of attic entry to the exit.
  • Install plastic containment curtains across doorways, windows and entrances to isolate and prohibit others (e.g., nonworkers, neighbors, occupants, and children) from gaining entry to the access corridor.
  • Install and operate a high efficiency particulate arrestor (HEPA) blower with filter in the lower work space to capture suspended particulates during restoration.
  • Maintain negative air pressure continuously in the work area from the beginning of work to final clearance.
  • Access the attic space, collect all feces and discolored insulation, and place the contents in sealed double plastic bags for disposal.
  • Use industry-accepted latrine removal procedures. All visible evidence of latrine debris shall be removed using methods such as manual removal, HEPA vacuuming, wet wiping, wet brushing, wet scraping and other state-of-the-art procedures. Dry sweeping or blowing shall be prohibited.
  • Non-impacted insulation may be removed with a vacuum truck.
  • Where appropriate, urine or fecal-stained ceiling and gypsum board wall materials should be removed and replaced.
  • Contaminated materials shall be adequately wetted and packaged in sealed leak-tight containers. Wet latrine waste shall be placed into labeled, leak-tight wrappings and/or containers according to industry standards.
  • Latrine waste containers shall be transported in enclosed vehicles to an appropriate disposal site.
  • All contaminated surfaces in the work area and decontamination area shall be wet wiped, HEPA vacuumed and cleaned. All debris shall be disposed in a manner consistent with disposal guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
  • Thoroughly HEPA vacuum the attic, spray with an anti-microbial treatment and Pyrethrin to destroy any parasites/nematodes.
  • New insulation should then be installed and a final cleaning performed.
  • Remove the containment curtains and floor covering. Dispose of all PPE equipment appropriately.


Ralph E. Moon, Ph.D., CHMM, CIAQP, is with GHD, a worldwide consulting firm. He has been a CLM Fellow since 2013 and can be reached at www.ghd.com.

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