Mold closes Chattanooga Ronald McDonald House

Mold closes Chattanooga Ronald McDonald House

August 24th, 2011 by Andrew Pantazi in News

On Tuesday in Chattanooga, Ronald McDonald House employees spoke to the media about mold found in several of the facility's rooms which has forced it to close until the problem has been taken care of.

Photo by Alex Washburn/Times Free Press.

The Ronald McDonald House next to Erlanger hospital closed Monday after mold was discovered in four of its rooms.

There were 13 families living at the house, which offers a place to stay for families whose children are being treated at local hospitals. None of the families were staying in the rooms where mold was found, but 11 of them moved to Courtyard by Marriott hotels and two went home, Executive Director Jane Kaylor said.

Affinity Group, a Soddy-Daisy company that fixes mold problems, was hired to remove the mold as a safety precaution, Kaylor said.

She said the mold was not harmful and probably was the result of the hot, humid summer.

"We had a very, very hot summer," Kaylor said. "This building has been here for 22 years, and this has never happened before. We've never had a summer like this before."

Henry Hoss, the treasurer for the Ronald McDonald House, said that the national headquarters recommended the house close, which an executive committee approved in a phone meeting Monday.

The administrative staff still is working in the offices, spokeswoman Chinyere Ubamadu said, and the staff is offering all of its meals at the family room at Erlanger hospital.

"We're trying to get an assessment of what our situation is," Hoss said, "and once we have an idea of what's going on, then we'll develop a plan of action."

Kaylor said she didn't know if the mold removal would be a matter of weeks or months.