About the author Ben Armstrong

TCEQ Mandate for EPA 5035A

Beginning January 1st, the TCEQ Remediation Division will require the use of United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) SW846 Method 5035A, Purge-and-Trap and Extraction for Volatile Organics in Soil and Waste Samples, as amended, for the collection and preparation of solid samples for volatile organic compound (VOC) analysis using purge-and-trap technology.

Read more below about the TCEQ Mandate for EPA 3035A: Continue Reading

Spontaneous Combustion Explained

Hang oily rags separately to dry properly

Hang oily rags separately to dry properly

When you hear about spontaneous combustion, the mind most likely first goes to the crazy stories about the man who burned to death in his chair, but his surroundings remained unaffected by the fire. This is called spontaneous human combustion, and there are some instances where certain variables were just right, and no other explanation could be made, but for the sake of chemistry and facts, we will be discussing self-heating oils and other materials that can in fact lead to a spontaneous explosion! Continue Reading

The Arson Investigation Processes Explained

arson investigationThe majority of the audience of this blog will most likely already know the steps involved conducting an arson investigation, and some sections may seem like a no-brainer, but for those that are not familiar, here is a brief guide to the process. Some cases are pretty open and shut. The investigators arrive on the scene, take a quality sample, send in the sample for analysis, and results show there is some source of ignitable liquid present. Continue Reading

OSHA MSHA Annual North Texas Regulatory Update Seminar

Armstrong Logo Large -2The University of Texas at Arlington OSHA Education Center along with the North Texas Section of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), the Fort Worth Chapter of the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) and the Southwest Chapter of ASSE will be hosting the Annual North Texas Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) & Mine Safety and Health Association (MSHA) Regulatory Update Seminar tomorrow, September 11th at Texas Star Golf Course in Euless, TX, and Armstrong is excited to announce that we will be exhibiting! Continue Reading

IASIU 2015 Seminar & Expo On Insurance Fraud – Armstrong Forensic Laboratory

Armstrong Logo Large -2
Armstrong Forensic Laboratory is excited to announce that we will be exhibiting at the 2015 International Association of Special Investigation Units IASIU Seminar & Expo on Insurance Fraud next week in Orlando! The theme of this year’s conference & expo is “Cruising For Fraud.” Our Account Manager, Charllotte Armstrong, will be at booth #311, so be sure to stop by and chat with her about how Armstrong can assist you with your next investigation! Continue Reading

Are Wastewater Plants Really Responsible For Unsightly Algae Blooms?

Beaches on Lake Champlain closed due to toxic algae blooms

Beaches on Lake Champlain closed due to toxic algae blooms

The beaches in the town of St. Albans on Lake Champlain are closed even though the weather is beautiful. The reason for the closing is the thriving algae blooms that have overtaken the shores. The blue-green algae is potentially toxic to humans and pets, so the town officials are forced to close the beaches every summer. The algae blooms flourish in certain conditions, which are usually in August when both the air and the water are warmer. When temperatures cool, the algae begins to disperse and the beaches are once again open to the public. Continue Reading

EPA Workers Accidentally Cause Toxic Spill

Entrance to the Gold King Mine on the left, and the runoff from the spill on the right

Entrance to the Gold King Mine on the left, and the runoff from the spill on the right

On August 5th, a team of Environmental Protection Agency workers accidentally breeched a contamination dam from the Gold King Mine near Silverton, Co., releasing three million gallons of toxic yellow sludge into the Animas River. The Gold King Mine has been abandoned since the 1920s, and was set to be plugged so that acid drainage would stop spilling into the river system. Continue Reading

Stormwater Runoff

Stormwater runoff is defined as the precipitation from rain or snowmelt that flows over the ground. Impervious surfaces like driveways, sidewalks, rooftops, and streets prevent stormwater runoff from naturally soaking into the ground, according to the EPA. This precipitation can pick up harmful pollutants from these surfaces like oil or grease from a car, pesticides, pet wastes, and fertilizer to name a few. The runoff can flow into a storm sewer system or directly to a lake, stream, river, wetland, or coastal water. Continue Reading

Stopping Insurance Fraud

A man is accused of committing insurance fraud by blowing up his own home in attempt to collect $300,000 in insurance money. The story begins when Mark Duckworth testified against his former friend, Mark Leonard, that Leonard said he was going to buy a Ferrari from insurance money after his house blew up. Leonard had help from his girlfriend, Monseratte Shirley, and his half brother, Bob Leonard, who also both face charges. They used gasoline as an accelerant to blow the house up, while claiming Tsunami winds blew his fireplace out and that caused the explosion. Continue Reading

Documentary On The Dangers Of Mold In The Home Or Office

David Asprey is the founder of Bulletproof Coffee and is the author of The Bulletproof Diet. Now, he is producing a documentary telling people about the dangers of breathing mold toxins in your home or office. He believes so strongly about this invisible health hazard that he has invested $200,000 of his own money to produce the documentary “Moldy.” Asprey says he’s been affected by mold since he was a child, and wants to share his story and his message to the world. In the film, it is estimated that 45 million people spend time in moldy buildings and a quarter of them are genetically sensitive to mold toxins. Continue Reading