Schools have not done enough to improve ventilation during coronavirus pandemic
Schools in the Netherlands carried out too few improvemens to their ventilation systems before they fully reopened, Indoor Climate Netherlands said according to AD. For those who decided to tackle the issue, the process has bern rather slow. Delays occur because numerous parties are involved in the installation of these types of systems, the report said.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, a great deal of attention has been paid to ventilation systems in indoor spaces. Public health agency RIVM advised ensuring proper ventilation in order to reduce the risk of contamination.
One of the prerequisites for schools to be able to fully reopen in May was to provide suitable ventilation systems. According to Wijma, the number of inquiries his company receives from schools is only slightly bigger than before the pandemic. He explained there was too little decisiveness in schools to provide better ventilation.
Numerous parties, such as consultants, contractors and municipal project managers, are involved in the installation of ventilation systems. Due to the complexity of the process, work is commonly delayed, Wijma said.
Moreover, many installers are currently struggling with shortages of materials, such as steel and wood, which makes the work even more difficult. “A small chain reaction is now taking place, and it wouldn’t have happened if people had acted on time,” said Wijma.
The National Coordination Team for Ventilation in Schools (LCVS) previously said that 20 percent of the school buildings were poorly ventilated. Wijma estimated it concerned 40 to 50 percent of schools.