Sep 15, 2009
By Sabrina Rodriguez, Eyewitness News
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Mold is everywhere, much to the dismay of apartment managers and property owners. While some mold can be harmless; in your home, mold can cause health problems and structural damage.
The Webster’s — David, Tiffiney and their one year old son, Jeremiah — have learned what a nuisance mold can be.
In July, David and Tiffiney say a gas company employee told the family that their water heater was leaky and needed to be replaced.
Since they live in the Bridgemont Terrace Apartment Complex the Webster’s told their property manager, who sent out a maintenance worker. According to the Webster’s, the worker said the water heater was fine.
But last week, the water heater stopped working all together. “It was all wet,” David said about the carpet in his son’s room. “It was wet for days on end.”
The water heater was next to Jeremiah’s room, and when the Webster’s took a closer look at the water damage they found mold and something else growing. “We had the mold (behind the door),” said Tiffiney.
“The mushrooms were in here, there was three mushrooms, and black mold and green mold all around the baseboards and then the closet.”
And with a one year old child, and Tiffiney being 14 weeks pregnant, the family is worried about their health, since both have been sick for the past two months.
Tiffiney says her son has had, “Two clogged ears and ear infections, diarrhea, runny nose.” She says she hasn’t been feeling well recently, and has been in and out of the hospital, “I felt I was going to lose my baby, like miscarriage. I was so sick.”
The apartment managers have said they would move the Webster’s to another unit, but they’re still worried. “I fear for the next family that lives here if they have children,” said Tiffiney.
We wanted to make sure the problem got fixed for the next family that moves in. We went to the leasing office, the property manager’s apartment, and tried calling but got no answer.
We also called Bakersfield Code Enforcement, who would be the ones to make sure that the property managers properly cleaned up the mold. A Code Enforcement representative told us an industrial hygienist needs to determine if the mold is hazardous before they can tell the apartment managers to fix it.