Asbestos abatement: removal and disposal of a dangerous substance
Asbestos abatement (know also as asbestos removal), has important regulations and requirements, whether the abatement is done for a home owner planning to remodel an ancient formica-countered kitchen; a school making upgrades to its post-war building, or a commercial land owner looking to repurpose an aging strip mall.
Asbestos abatement requirements
Federal, state and local agencies regulate the requirements for the removal of asbestos containing materials (ACM) in residential and commercial structures that were built into the mid-1970s. A certified asbestos abatement inspector must prepare a report regarding the presence of ACM and any asbestos will need to be removed before renovations can begin.
If the inspection report reveals that asbestos-containing materials are present and therefore will require abatement, only a certified asbestos contractor is permitted to perform the work. Certified contractors can ensure that the work is performed in accordance with regulations, make certain that mandatory testing is performed for airborne asbestos while the job is being done, and ensure that asbestos-containing debris is disposed of in accordance with federal, state and local requirements.
Asbestos was used in the construction and renovation of virtually every residential, business, school and church property built in the first half of the 20th century. The dangerous carcinogen (cancer-causing substance) was commonly used in:
Walls and asbestos ceilings insulation materials;
Vinyl asbestos floor tiles and sub-flooring materials (including buildings where hard wood floors were not installed);
Tape and other insulation materials used to cover water and heating pipes; and
Materials used to insulate furnaces, boilers and hot water tanks.
If asbestos has been found in your home, you can either hire a professional abatement team, or remove the asbestos yourself. If you choose to remove the asbestos without the aid of a professional abatement company, you may run in to complications and find yourself with added costs. Despite this challenge, however, many homeowners across America do opt to perform the process themselves. If you decide this is the best option for you, it is imperative that you adhere to the required safety measures and keep everyone in your home safe.
Asbestos abatement safety measures
The first step of the asbestos abatement process is to obtain samples and have it tested. If asbestos has contaminated an area in your home area, you can then proceed with the abatement process. Note: asbestos, if left alone, is non-toxic. Therefore, home owners are only advised to remove only when absolutely necessary.
Here is an overview of the preliminary asbestos abatement steps:
obtain proper breathing ventilation systems,
purchase protective clothing that complies with State and Federal regulations, and
obtain removal permits from your State regulators.
This administration extends to your liability for the team that may be working with you on the abatement. To that end, proper work tools, clothing such as overalls, boots, eye protection, gloves, and breathing respirators are required for everyone working on the project. Keep in mind that hiring workers other than a professional abatement team is against the law. You do need to have trained people with you during the abatement, particularly so one person can tackle removing the material, while the other packages the material and keeps it wet until disposal.
Before the abatement process begins, purchase all the tools necessary, including:
dish washing detergent,
pry bar and
When you begin your asbestos abatement, it is vital to keep the material wet at all times. This is because if the asbestos is moist, the fibers will not become airborne. Your crew should carefully scrape the asbestos off the surface into special bags that are made for asbestos removal. The next step is to seal and hand the bags over to another member on the team to be sealed again.
Once the abatement project is complete the contained asbestos material should be kept in sealed and labeled storage bins aand taken to a landfill designed for asbestos. In addition, you and your workers must decontaminate themselves by wetting themselves down and removing the protective clothing.