It is possible that the after effects of a fire in a building can manifest themselves long after the fire has passed and life has returned to ‘normal’.
Chloride residues can have a devastating effect on structures, fixtures and fittings affected by or close to the fire. The resulting chloride residues significantly increase the likelihood of the degradation of affected structures through corrosion. In addition, chloride residues are highly toxic and can be harmful to humans, affecting the respiratory system and eyes for example, if left untreated.
Chloride Gases are created during a fire when structures containing chlorine such as PVC and plastics are burned. Particles carried within the smoke and soot generated by the fire, (which is often pressurised as a result of the fire) can penetrate porous materials, becoming trapped as the materials cool.
Assessment of contamination is made through the application of chloride testing methods designed to determine the level of chlorides on affected surfaces. The findings of these chloride tests are used to inform decisions regarding the unique cleaning goals and approaches that will be applied to the recovery process, minimising future corrosion.