Although many countries still approve the use of asbestos, it has been banned in the United States. However, this was not always the case. Thus, if remodeling or demoing an older home or building, you may very well come across asbestos. Knowing what you’re dealing with and the proper asbestos abatement procedures is an imperative step to ensure a safe environment.
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a group of minerals that are structured as bundles of fibers. The three most common types of asbestos are; chrysotile, amosite, and crocidolite. Once used as a standard method of insulation and fire protectant, asbestos fibers are incredibly strong. Their properties made them ideal in popcorn ceilings, structural beams, floor tiles, exterior siding, windows, ductwork, as well as insulation.
When does asbestos become dangerous?
Often, asbestos becomes apparent when remodeling or tearing down an existing structure. When disrupted, the fibers separate and become airborne. Thus, asbestos becomes dangerous to humans. If inhaled, the airborne particles can cause a variety of issues such as, but not limited to; asbestosis, mesothelioma, or cancer. Even if none of the mentioned occurred, the buildup of fibers in the lungs can cause difficulties breathing. Contrary to popular opinion, sometimes asbestos is best left alone. However, under the advice of a professional and only if properly maintained, should this option be a consideration.
How is asbestos removed?
Although there are no laws mandating the removal of asbestos, most states only allow asbestos abatement to occur by licensed contractors. Proper containment with negative pressure and safety equipment will be utilized to ensure safety to those around the area. The asbestos will then be wet down and scraped from surfaces. It is then collected in specially designed and labeled bags. One full, the bag is sealed and place into another, separate container. The asbestos will then be disposed of as contaminated waste. However, there are other methods of removal based upon State guidelines outlined in the Department of Labor’s Rules for Abatement.
Who do I contact if I think there may be asbestos in my home?
If you believe your building or home contains asbestos, it’s imperative to contact our state’s Asbestos Division as soon as possible. There you will find a list of qualified contractors that can help inspect and remedy the situation. However, if you’re in the New England area, you can save time and contact Atlantic Bay Contracting.
Experts in asbestos abatement, Allen Young, and his experienced team, can ensure your safety. EPA, DBE, and MBE-certified, Atlantic Bay Contracting will eliminate any threat and leave you with the peace of mind you deserve. To learn more, visit us online or give us a call at (617) 782-4986.