Although the federal government, by way of the EPA, OHSA and other agencies set regulations on asbestos abatement, state reserve the right to modify and strengthen these provisions as they see fit. Each state will certify asbestos abatement technicians who are required to demonstrate knowledge of asbestos and undergo training so that they understand the potential dangers of asbestos when they will work with it.
What are the Arkansas asbestos abatement procedures for notification?
Like other states that follow federal guidelines, notification of demolition or renovation must be made ten working days prior to the start of work. The exception is government ordered demolition where the notification can be made as late as one day after the work has begun. If there is at least 260 feet of pipe, 15 square meters of flat material or 35 cubic feet of components that cannot be measured that contain asbestos, then notification will be necessary for renovations.
How does Regulation 21 define asbestos?
Arkansas asbestos abatement procedures ensure that any material that is comprised of more than 1% asbestos will be accounted, inspected and proper measures will be taken to prevent it from releasing harmful residue. Non-friable asbestos is generally not a threat to the health of inhabitants unless the structure is being demolished or there is reasonable belief that renovation will cause the non-friable material to crumble and release asbestos strands. These crumbling materials are covered by Category II of the non-friable classification.
Friable asbestos is more likely to release fibers as it will yield to human pressure and is prone to degrading over time. This application is commonly seen in plaster, joint compound, weatherproofing and popcorn ceilings. Proper abatement will include soaking the material with water. Wetting the asbestos prevents the release of thousands of microfibers. Special filters that trap small particles, known as HEPA filters are also used to trap this residue. All restricted asbestos controlled materials identified by Arkansas asbestos abatement procedures will need to be removed before renovation or demolition can occur.
How is asbestos cleaned according to Arkansas asbestos abatement procedures?
The focus of asbestos abatement procedures is to prevent both long term and incidental asbestos exposure. Asbestos is most easily spread though disturbing asbestos fixtures needlessly, such as through amateur removal. Although those that work with asbestos regularly are the most vulnerable to illness, you will not want to inhale this material as it is toxic and will not break down in your lungs. Smokers and those with lung problems will be especially sensitive to loose asbestos particles. Federal mandates require a HEPA filter and vacuums to catch the smallest of airborne particles.
There is the alternative to seal friable asbestos through a process called “encapsulation.” This does not remove the asbestos but as long as the seal remains, there is no risk and the asbestos is non-friable. This is typically done on popcorn ceilings.