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Asbestos In Schools

Asbestos In Schools

Asbestos-Containing Materials in Schools
 
 
The possible presence of asbestos containing materials in schools is of particular worry as many school buildings were built in the era of the asbestos construction boom.  Most buildings built in the 20th century prior to a ban on asbestos containing construction materials in 1979.  Still, the ban was limited enough to allow existing asbestos materials to be used up in new constructions.  The EPA is tasked with providing for the safety of children in schools through enforcing mandates for air quality testing after abatement projects, strict regulations for asbestos abatement in schools and maintains emergency protocol in the event of visible emissions or other dangerous situations.
 
 
What legislative provisions define asbestos procedure in schools?
 
 
The Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act is a 1986 law that provided for the inspection of schools for asbestos materials and requiring the development of an asbestos management program for schools.  AHERA covers both public and private schools, including schools with religious affiliations.  Specifically, Chapter 40, Part 763, Subpart E defines all the provisions that schools must follow to protect students from asbestos.
 
 
Compliance
 
 
Schools must comply with both AHERA regulations protecting schools and Asbestos National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants standards for proper asbestos abatement during renovations and demolitions.  Local education agencies have the primary role in ensuring compliance with these regulations and ensuring that proper testing and procedure is followed, especially when aging school buildings undergo repair.  Even small scale abatement and repair should be conscious of asbestos regulations and provide adequate protection to maintenance staff to prevent the inhalation of fibers.  Additionally, any about of asbestos, no matter how small, should be wetted, scraped and double bagged, as per AHERA and NESHAP regulations.
 
 
According to AHERA, schools must evaluate known asbestos containing materials in the school every six months.  This includes testing the air quality for the presence of asbestos fibers after construction projects.  Specialist contractors, plan writers, inspectors and workers will also be certified to work in schools and perform abatement to protect students and staff from unnecessary exposure.
 
 
Where asbestos might be found in schools
 
 
Insulated pipes remain one of the biggest threats for friable asbestos exposure.  Asbestos pipe covering are prone to breaking apart and when this occurs, microfibers will fill enclosed areas, creating a toxic environment.  Maintenance workers in particular art susceptible to being sickened from these poorly ventilated environments.  Many school heating and water systems will feature this type of piping and abatement would need to be carried out immediately.  In one, school, teachers that had to pass through the maintenance area to leave the building eventually developed respiratory illnesses.
 
 
All renovation work in schools brings the risk of potential asbestos contamination, via friable materials in the wall.  Even non-friable materials, such as concrete can be pulverized and dispersed, presenting a serious health hazard.  All in the school building would be in danger of illness if renovation sites are not adequately sealed and proper abatement, as per an asbestos management plan, is not followed.
 
 
What is the current status of asbestos in schools?
 
 
The EPA considers current asbestos in schools as “managed-in-place,” noting its potential danger, but stress that hazards can be controlled with effective asbestos management programs and proper safety and emergency precautions.  Non-friable asbestos is not removed as it is not a threat to any occupant in the building.  This is consistent with EPA and other policy related to non-friable asbestos.  Friable asbestos however, is removed at the earliest opportunity.
 
 
Asbestos management plans in schools
 
 
Asbestos management plans are required of every school under the AHERA.  This includes records of asbestos related activity at the school, an accounting for all asbestos materials within the school and efforts to deal with that dangerous material.  The “asbestos management plans” are created and maintained by the “local education authority,” which can be a school district, parish or charter organization.
 
 
The records comprising the asbestos management plan must include:
 
 
A listing of each school, the presence of asbestos at the school and the type of asbestos
 
 
Date of initial asbestos inspection and plans to re-inspect the school
 
 
Blueprints of each property, designated the location of the asbestos material
 
 
A detail emergency response, should asbestos materials become exposed
 
 
Analysis of potentially friable asbestos material, if applicable
 
 
Steps taken to keep staff, parents and workers informed on the presence of asbestos and ongoing actions to manage asbestos materials in the school. All must be routinely informed whenever a major asbestos abatement or maintenance project potentially involving asbestos.
 
 
All staff, parents and other employees reserve the right to view the asbestos management plan at any time and the school is responsible to make that plan available without a reasonable amount of time.  there is one person in every school that is appointed by the local education authority. 
 
 
The asbestos plan is updated every six months after a re-observation period.  Inspections must be conducted every three years with the plan revaluated at that time.  Records will be kept on notifications and accessibility of the management plan to parents and staff.
 
 
What schools must follow asbestos management plans?
 
 
All schools must comply with this management pan unless the building’s architect can certify in writing that no asbestos materials were used in the building.  Obviously, this is applicable only to the newest of buildings.
 
 
Enforcement
 
 
The EPA will enforce the AHERA provisions on schools in all states except: Connecticut, Colorado, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas, and Utah.  These states will have their own agencies to deal with asbestos in the schools, but will follow the AHERA mandates.
 
 

Delaware Asbestos Laws

Delaware Asbestos Laws

 
Delaware asbestos laws focus primarily on the removal and disposal of harmful asbestos materials and compliance with federal requirements on environmental and workplace exposure.  The state of Delaware will certify all professionals that perform abatement work and supervise disposal efforts through the Solid Waste and Hazardous Waste Branch of the Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control.
 
 
Notification requirements
 
 
For any substantial work to remove asbestos from a building, according to Delaware asbestos laws, you must give ten working days’ notice to the DNEC in case special precautions need to be taken or observed.  This is applicable to any renovation where at least 160 square feet or 260 feet of asbestos containing material will be removed from a structure.  Almost all abatement work will require the expert advice of an asbestos inspector licensed by the state.  Even if there is no asbestos present, Delaware asbestos law states that all demolition projects must be inspected for asbestos and submitted for approval by the state before the demolition can proceed.  This prevents accidental contamination.  You do not need to notify the state if you are renovating and there is asbestos below the previously mentioned threshold.
 
 
Can I remove asbestos from my own home?
 
 
You may, but you will want an asbestos inspector to evaluate your home before you proceed.  Often those removing asbestos on their own will cause accidental contamination by removing the asbestos improperly or releasing fibers accidentally.  Only single family, owner occupied homes may asbestos be removed by the owner.  Whenever this occurs, procedures for the safe disposal must be observed to avoid potential fines and other penalties.  You will not need to remove asbestos if it is indurate and in no danger of releasing harmful fibers.
 
 
How to I dispose of asbestos containing materials, according to Delaware asbestos laws?
 
 
The Delaware laws on asbestos abatement follow federal mandates to prevent the dumping or exposure of asbestos materials on the environment.  One must contact the Delaware Solid Waste Authority 24 hours in advance to make arrangements to transfer of deliver the asbestos containing material.  The state authority also maintains a list of waste haulers that can carry the asbestos containing materials on your behalf.
 
 
Can I file for asbestos litigation in Delaware?
 
 
Most asbestos claims will be determined in settlement by working with the employer or entity responsible for the exposure.  Still those that cannot reach a settlement and need to pursue a claim in court can do so without being hampered by restrictive laws on mesothelioma and other asbestos litigation.  You must have an asbestos related illness and be able to demonstrate how the defendant is responsible for the injury.  You will be able to find Delaware asbestos lawyers that are familiar with 
 
 

Idaho Asbestos Laws

Idaho Asbestos Laws

 
Idaho is not a state with prevalent asbestos contamination, although it will be found in many homes and other structures.  Idaho does however have the unique distinction of ceding its responsibility for asbestos control, inspection and regulation back to the EPA.  In addition, instead of licensing individuals to perform asbestos abatement or inspections, the state of Idaho will simply trust a “competent individual” recognized in another state to perform the asbestos abatement procedures.
 
 
What areas of the Idaho government deal with asbestos?
 
 
The Idaho Division of Environmental Quality has limited responsibility under Idaho asbestos laws.  As a result, the DEQ provides an Asbestos Compliance Analyst for large scale asbestos projects.  This functionary will help facilitate compliance with EPA rules and regulations.  If you are dealing with “Tier 1” large scale abatement, you will need to provide advance notification to the Idaho DEQ.  Otherwise, the DEQ will play little role in your asbestos abatement project.  All other abatement notifications must be sent to the nearest EPA coordinator.
 
 
How do I provide notification of asbestos abatement under Idaho asbestos laws?
 
 
The form to provide notification to either the EPA or DEQ is simple and can be found at the DEQ website.  On this short form, you will need to detail the following information:
 
 
Owner name and contact, including address
 
 
Removal Contractor contact, including address
 
 
Type of asbestos related operation, of which there are four options:
 
 
o D – Demolition
 
 
o O – Ordered Demo
 
 
o R – Renovation
 
 
o E – Emergency Renovation
 
 
Emergency renovations and demolitions ordered by a government agency will proceed fast that a typical scheduled demolition or renovation
 
 
Facility description, which includes the use of the building, its age and size, as well as location
 
 
Procedure used to discern the presence of asbestos
 
 
Amount of asbestos, which is an estimate of all asbestos in the building, even asbestos that does not need to be removed.  There will be different boxes for asbestos pipes as well as other non-liner materials.  All Regulated Asbestos Controlled Materials should be removed.
 
 
Method of abatement, including all relevant techniques
 
 
Waste transporter contact information and waste disposal site
 
 
If this is an ordered demolition or emergency renovation, you must note the date of the order and the reason for special exceptions.
 
 
What are Regulated Asbestos Controlled Materials?
 
 
RACMs are generally materials that must be removed from buildings as they pose an immediate threat, either in their present state, or likely to be a threat at a later date as a result of renovations.  All ACM must be removed from a building prior to demolition.  Even non-friable material can potential crumble and release fibers when broken by an external force.
 
 

Massachusetts Asbestos Abatement Procedure

Massachusetts Asbestos Abatement Procedure

 
The Massachusetts DEP is responsible for Massachusetts asbestos abatement procedure, which generally focuses on removing friable material, authorizing building demolition and certifying asbestos professionals for proper inspection and abatement.  This is accomplished with the cooperation of the MassDEP and Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards.  The Massachusetts DEP also maintains a list of asbestos projects for public review, in keeping with federal mandates to keep residents informed of the potential dangers associated with Massachusetts asbestos abatement procedure.
 
 
Who may remove asbestos in Massachusetts?
 
 
The Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards runs the certification program for asbestos workers and contractors.  DLS will also certify professionals that work with asbestos, including asbestos management planners, project designers and training providers.  Those that wish to work with asbestos in Massachusetts must at minimum, complete a state certified course on asbestos safety, abatement procedure and the harmful effects of asbestos on the respiration system.  Contractors must demonstrate knowledge of federal worker safety standards and also account for all individuals working under them that will be handling asbestos or asbestos related procedure.  There is also an associated fee for licensing.  Asbestos professionals generally need to show some proof of college education in a specific field before being certified to create abatement plans and other asbestos-related functions.
 
 
Abatement requirements for schools
 
 
Schools and other public buildings have very high levels of asbestos containing materials and as such have specific rules to prevent extended exposure.  All school buildings must be inspected by an asbestos inspector every three years.  Buildings that have any asbestos containing material at all must formulate an asbestos management plan to avoid further possible exposure and other complications.  Remember that even suspended, non-friable material can become dangerous if the material becomes exposed or broken.  All staff and parents must be notified, as per Massachusetts asbestos abatement procedure.
 
 
Notification of asbestos abatement
 
 
According to Massachusetts asbestos abatement procedure, you must notify the MassDEP ten working days before beginning any project involving asbestos.  You will not have to wait for a permit, but your worksite might be inspected to ensure you are complying with Massachusetts asbestos abatement procedure properly.
 
 
What materials need to be removed?
 
 
All friable materials that are not sealed in indurate material must be removed as this is a pressing health hazard.  All other dormant sources of asbestos may remain if it is not going to be disturbed during the renovation.  In the event of a demolition, all materials, regardless of its friability, should be removed from the structure.  Even non-friable material can break and release fibers, making it equally as dangerous.
 
 
Non-friable materials generally seal the asbestos in difficult to penetrate material and in its typical form, this makes it impossible to release fibers.  Renovation as simple as sanding or drilling can make this material friable.
 
 

Massachusetts Asbestos Laws

Massachusetts Asbestos Laws

 
Residents of Massachusetts have been exposed to asbestos in a number of ways, typically through shipbuilding and industry.  The failure of employers to heed warning about asbestos and the wide use of materials has led to a number of illnesses related to asbestos.  The Massachusetts DEP is responsible for applying federal mandates into the Massachusetts asbestos laws.  This organization will certify inspectors and contractors to remove the hazardous material and approve demolitions when necessary.
 
 
What are the dangers associated with working at the Boston shipyard?
 
 
Asbestos found welcome use in the shipbuilding and at its peak, the material was used in almost 3oo different applications.  Most of these applications involved fire or waterproofing and was administered as a spray compound.  Asbestos in its spray able form is very friable and when combined with the poor ventilation in the ships being built, the conditions are similar to an asbestos mine.  Many of these shipyard workers will become sick due to working in this hazardous environment.  These shipyards have since undergone abatement, as set by Massachusetts asbestos laws.
 
 
What are Regulated Asbestos Controlled Materials?
 
 
RACMs are generally materials that must be removed from buildings as they pose an immediate threat, either in their present state, or likely to be a threat at a later date as a result of renovations.  All ACM must be removed from a building prior to demolition.  Even non-friable material can potentially crumble and release fibers when broken by an external force.  Friable materials are dangerous as the will release micro fibers that are impossible to see.  These fibers will be inhaled and cause a host of health problems for those that are exposed to large qualities.  Demolition not only makes materials friable, it will help the fibers spread quickly into the surrounding area.
 
 
Can I file for asbestos litigation in Massachusetts?
 
 
Most asbestos claims will be determined in settlement by working with the employer or entity responsible for the exposure.  Still those that cannot reach a settlement and need to pursue a claim in court can do so without being hampered by restrictive laws on mesothelioma and other asbestos litigation.  You must have an asbestos related illness and be able to demonstrate how the defendant is responsible for the injury.  You will be able to find Massachusetts asbestos lawyers that are familiar with Massachusetts asbestos laws through the Find Attorneys function on this website.
 
 
Can I remove asbestos from my residence?
 
 
You may, but you will want an asbestos inspector to evaluate your home before you proceed.  Often those removing asbestos on their own will cause accidental contamination by removing the asbestos improperly or releasing fibers accidentally.  Only single family, owner occupied homes may asbestos be removed by the owner.  Whenever this occurs, procedures for the safe disposal must be observed to avoid potential fines and other penalties.  You will not need to remove asbestos if it is indurate and in no danger of releasing harmful fibers.
 

All About Asbestos Lawsuit

All About Asbestos Lawsuit

Asbestos is
a fibrous material that is used to make fireproof materials and is used in
various types of structures. Before the 1980s, asbestos was one of the most
widely used materials in construction and various other jobs. However, there
was an unknown danger attached to asbestos.  This danger was that the material
itself is a carcinogen and can be potentially harmful to individuals.

An asbestos lawsuit is now one of the most common
and easily filed type of lawsuit. This is because there are now asbestos
lawyers who concentrate in this particular field of work.  Asbestos
afflictions can range anywhere between lung scarring, lung damage, to
Mesothelioma, which is a rare form of cancer cause by asbestos.

An asbestos lawsuit can be filed by an individual
who has had long-term exposure to asbestos because of working conditions. There
have even been asbestos lawsuits for the wrongful death of an individual who
worked around asbestos.

Seeking out a specialized lawyer for an asbestos
lawsuit is one of the best ways to arm an individual with knowledge of the
illnesses and the dangers. Being able to recall specific time periods in which
an individual was exposed to the material, as well as the length of time of the
exposure, in terms of months or years, is important. And of course, knowing what
company they were working for in order to properly sue.

There are a number of individuals who are
currently suffering from lung issues caused by asbestos. An asbestos lawsuit
can bring compensation to help with medical payments and various other
necessities needed for these individuals.

Asbestos Brake Pads

Asbestos Brake Pads

 
Although knowledge is common about asbestos in structures and the potential health hazards of having this material exposed and friable, little is made about the presence of asbestos in brake pads.  As asbestos is an excellent insulator that is heat resistant, the versatile chrysotile asbestos, which accounts for 95% of all asbestos in the United States, was manufactured into brake linings in automobiles and other vehicles.  While these worked, they also posed a major health hazard to those that repair and maintain these breaks, as well as the workers that assemble them.
 
 
How prevalent are asbestos brake pads?
 
 
Asbestos brake pads are no longer manufactured and used on modern cars.  They are however present in many older cars.  The Occupation Safety and Health Administration has issued safety guidelines that involve maintenance workers and mechanics that repair cars to be aware of potentially encountering dust from these asbestos brakes.
 
 
What is the proper way to work on asbestos brakes?
 
 
The OHSA recommends that the trained professional utilize a HEPA filter when working on any car that may have asbestos brakes.  Since asbestos fibers are tiny and not visible to the human eye, a HEPA filter is the only way to be sure as much particles as possible are taken out of the environment.  Working on the asbestos brakes will almost certainly release some of these particles, as well as asbestos dust, all of which are hazardous.  Even residue left from the brakes may sicken other persons not in the proximity of the car.  
 
 
When working on asbestos brakes, the area must be enclosed to prevent accidental release of asbestos fibers.  This will work in concert with the HEPA filter to clear the air.  It is also recommended to use compressed air to dislodge any particles from the brake assembly or other surfaces and have it sucked into the filter.  Additional regulations mandate that the enclosure by transparent and clearly lit, to be prevent accidents and releases from occurring.  A powerful, specialized vacuum is also need to trap asbestos dust and residue.  This is in addition to the HEPA filter.
 
 
How do I remove asbestos breaks?
 
 
You should not attempt to service the brakes yourself.  This material is a serious health hazard as well as a known carcinogen that will cause asbestosis, lung cancer or mesothelioma.  Mesothelioma is by far the deadliest, with only a two year life expectancy once it develops.  Only a certified and trained automotive repair technician, with the tools needed to service asbestos breaks, should service asbestos brakes.
 
 
The technician may use a wet method, which is also typical of asbestos abatement in structures.  This method involves spraying the brake assembly with a low pressure stream of water, ensuring that runoff is collected.  Wetting the assembly is important to ensuring that the asbestos particles are not released into the air when they are serviced.
 
 
Sometimes the best solution might be to get a new car.  Asbestos breaks have been long phased out of car manufacturing and you will likely find a more efficient car that will not need regular service on its hazardous brakes.  Bear in mind that asbestos brake pads may have been used as late at the early 90’s.  Most mechanics will be aware of this and will practice diligence when servicing potentially hazardous brake systems.
 
 
It is also important to note that asbestos is not illegal in the US, but rather heavily regulated.  As such, aftermarket and non-standard brakes run the risk of having dangerous asbestos brake pads in their assembly.  Strict regulations on mechanics ensure that over an eight hour period, there must be no more than 0.1 fibers per cubic centimeter inside the garage, at any time.
 

Colorado Asbestos Laws

Colorado Asbestos Laws

 
Like other states, Colorado’s industrial past is the leading contributor to asbestos contamination and illness in the state.  Those that worked in construction are also at high risk to become sickened by asbestos exposure.  Although the federal government sets the rules on asbestos safety in the workplace and in the environment, it is the responsibility of the state government to deal with inspection, abatement and disposal.  Colorado asbestos laws place the responsibility for the state related functions of asbestos control with the Air Pollution Control Division of the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment.
 
 
What do Colorado asbestos laws say about me removing asbestos from my home?
 
 
Generally speaking, if you are removing asbestos from your home and your home only, you need not obtain a permit to do so or even notify the state.  This is limited to your primary residence only and you will need a permit to handle the needs of other houses.  Although you may remove asbestos by yourself and it is not incredibly difficult, it is still dangerous.  The issue with self-removal is that you will inevitably upset the asbestos deposits and release thousands of harmful asbestos particles.  Proper asbestos abatement, under most circumstances, requires wetting the material and is best handled by a professional.  In addition, you will need to abide by state regulations for disposing of the removed asbestos material properly, regardless of who removes it.
 
 
How do I dispose of asbestos under Colorado asbestos law?
 
 
Non-friable asbestos, which is asbestos that does not leach particles into the air as it is sealed, will be accepted at some landfills.  The landfill must be contacted in advance for approval before the material may be dropped off.  Friable asbestos is only accepted at five landfills in the entire state and each landfill has its own rules about what materials it will accept and from where.
 
 
Do I have to remove all of the asbestos?
 
 
Colorado asbestos law allows you leave some asbestos in the building for near-term use as long as it does not pose a health threat to anyone.  Any future construction and demolition will have to be approved by the state government before it is allowed to proceed accordingly.  
 
 
Do I have to notify the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment?
 
 
If the asbestos is being removed from any structure other than one’s primary residence, written notification must be submitted to the CDHPE ten working days prior to the renovation or demolition.  There is a notification fee that will be assessed along with the notification.  You must file the notification through a Notification of Demolition form available from the Air Pollution Control Division.  The notification form will ask you about the types of asbestos in the structure, how much of it is present, will be removed and who will be performing the removal.  Only an individual licensed by the state of Colorado, after completing a mandatory training course, may remove asbestos from structures.
 
 

Asbestos in the Home

Asbestos in the Home

What should be done about asbestos in my home?
 
 
You will be surprised to hear that generally you should do nothing about asbestos in your home.  Generally, most applications of asbestos materials in the home are sealed in the walls or other indurate material.  As long as this material is intact, there is no danger to you.  This danger factor changes depending on the application.  If the secured application of asbestos breaks down, it will release harmful asbestos fibers.  There are also some typical applications of asbestos materials that are an immediate danger.  Generally speaking, continuous or heavy exposure to asbestos materials will exacerbate risk factors for lung cancer and long term exposure will lead to asbestos related illness.
 
 
It is most important to note that the worst exposure to asbestos fibers will occur during improper abatement by homeowners.  Follow this guide to ensure you are safe and prevent secondary contamination or the air in your home or other materials.  Most importantly, you are advised for most projects involving a heavy amount of asbestos to include an inspection by an asbestos inspector licensed in the state.  You may even need to consider having a professional perform the asbestos abatement.
 
 
Places where you will find dangerous asbestos
 
 
Insulation is the biggest culprit of asbestos in the home.  Most insulation applications are friable, which means that can be broken with minimal force and when this happens, tiny fibers are released.  These fibers cannot be seen by the human eye.  Asbestos by nature is comprised of fibers.  All fibers are comprised of the previously described smaller fibers.  Due to their size and weight, asbestos fibers are made easily airborne and inhaled.  Asbestos fibers do not break down and remain in the body for decades, damaging the lungs.
 
 
You will find friable materials as insulation on pipes, certain types of plaster ceilings and wool-like insulation.  These three materials generally need to be removed according to proper asbestos abatement procedure.  These are also the three materials that are difficult to remove properly.
 
 
Dangers of poor abatement
 
 
Removing friable asbestos dry is a mistake.  Wetting asbestos fibers prevents their release.  The waterlogged fibers do not become airborne and make the subsequent cleanup significantly easier.  It is also a mistake to not use HEPA filters and vacuums.  These extra-fine filters are necessary to prevent tiny particles from being released and cause secondary contamination.
 
 
Plastic sheeting is used in asbestos abatement for good reason.  You need to create a controlled environment for asbestos abatement.  Professional abatement will use the sheeting in conjunction with an air filter that cycles air through the enclosure while removing fibers that are inevitably disturbed and released.  Federal law regarding asbestos abatement mandates the use of these enclosures and that the HEPA filter cycling the air do so completely four times in an hour.  This should give you an understanding of the need for proper filtration during asbestos abatement.
 
 
Protective clothing and good hygiene must be performed to protect workers from sickening themselves.  Federal guidelines mandate a specialized decontamination shower to prevent asbestos fibers from escaping on clothing and equipment worn at the asbestos abatement location.  This will not be feasible in your home but should give you an idea that you should be ready to dispose of the tools, clothing and protective material used in the abatement.  Some states will mandate that this equipment be disposed of sealed in the same banner as the friable asbestos.
 
 
Should I remove asbestos from my home?
 
 
There is no law that explicitly states you must remove asbestos from your home.  You are bound by laws that provide for the safe disposal of asbestos containing materials and other statutes that provide penalties for irresponsible abatement.  The fact is, most asbestos in the home is not dangerous until there is renovation or demolition taking place.
 
 
Self-removal of asbestos containing materials will potentially cause more harm than necessary as since breaching indurate material will cause the mass release of harmful fibers.  Asbestos abatement procedure minimizes this risk by mandating adequate protection, filters to trap loose particles and techniques such as wetting friable asbestos to prevent fibers from becoming airborne.
 
 
What else can I do about asbestos in my home?
 
 
The typical homeowner does have more affordable options to safeguard their home.  You can seal asbestos fibers to prevent their escape.  This is cheaper than removing all the materials and replacing it with safer alternatives.  This is called encapsulation and can be performed by a licensed asbestos contractor.  
 
 
Encapsulation is a viable alternative for surfaces such as plaster ceilings that inevitably break down and leach fibers.  As long as the bond remains intact, no fibers will pass through the encapsulation.  Surfaces, such as round pipes, that otherwise cannot have the bond applied can undergo enclosure.  Enclosure surrounds the friable material with an indurate material, typically concrete, effectively sealing it and preventing the fibers from escaping.  Like the encapsulation, as long as the barrier remains intact, there is no danger to you or your family.  
 
 
Encapsulation eliminates a number of issues, not the least of which is the hassle of removing and safely disposing of asbestos materials.  Homeowners cannot dispose of asbestos as typical waste and would have to arrange with a contractor or disposal site to remove the asbestos and comply with state and federal laws.  These two procedures, which must be performed by a licensed contractor, can be done for cheaper and is a useful solution to what should be done about asbestos in your home.
 
 
Importance of licensing
 
 
You must use a licensed contractor only.  The license must specifically cover asbestos abatement.  All states are mandated to have criteria for contractors performing asbestos abatement.  This will include safety training and proven knowledge of performing asbestos abatement procedure.
 
 

Asbestos Inspector

Asbestos Inspector

What is a professional asbestos inspector?
 
 
A professional asbestos inspector is certified by the state to inspect properties and structures for possible asbestos contamination.  Many properties are required to have inspections by almost all states before beginning renovation or demolition work.  This includes commercial and industrial parties, but generally not residential homes and small apartment buildings.  Still, all structures will benefit from the opinion and evaluation from a professional asbestos inspector.
 
 
How does one become an asbestos inspector?
 
 
The qualifications to become an asbestos inspector vary by state but since state asbestos laws are based on federal mandates, there is little actual variation to the knowledge necessary to be licensed.  Almost all states provide a training course accredited by the state asbestos abatement authority.  These courses may be standard for all prospective professionals or tailored depending on the certification.  Generalized course will cover asbestos safety, the effect of asbestos on the body and asbestos abatement procedure,  more specialized courses will focus on identifying asbestos materials and conducting testing.
 
 
Testing for asbestos in the home
 
 
Although some asbestos materials can be verified by sight, laboratory testing is usually required by professional asbestos inspectors to determine the nature and danger of an asbestos contamination.  Asbestos by nature is tiny, friable and impossible to detect with conventional means.  Laboratory testing eliminates most of the guesswork, by either testing air samples or analyzing samples of building materials taken from the structure.  Since friable asbestos is so easily broken, it is not difficult to collect these samples.
 
 
What the professional asbestos inspector will look for
 
 
Asbestos inspectors know to look for certain materials that are prone to asbestos contamination.  This includes most forms of insulation.  Pipe insulation, which usually consists of asbestos fibers wrapped around a metal pipe, has been prime candidates for breaking apart and releasing asbestos fibers into basements.  Since basements are generally not well ventilated, there will be a high concentration of fibers there.  Ventilation is an important factor in inspections, as this will help determine the potential severity of contamination in any area with emissions.
 
 
Attics too, have the same issues as basements.  You are not likely to find asbestos pipes here, but the asbestos inspector will be looking for friable asbestos insulation.  Popped vermiculite, an ordinarily harmless material, was contaminated with massive amounts of asbestos during its mining in this country.  This inevitably sickened miners, factory workers and now poses a risk to those that inhabit properties that use this insulation.  Poor ventilation means that if this wool-like asbestos material breaks down, it will become airborne easily, but not leave the structure.
 
 
Where to find a professional asbestos inspector
 
 
Most states will have listings of professional asbestos inspectors that are certified to inspect and identify asbestos containing materials.  The Asbestos Control Program in your state will have this information on their website.  Alternatively, you may call them directly for more information.
 
 
Why do I need a professional asbestos inspector?
 
 
Some states mandate that asbestos materials in structures be accounted for before it can be removed or any construction work will take place.  States take this a step further by requiring certain notification forms to be completed by the inspector that certify the nature and amount of asbestos in the structure, as well as recommendations for its removal.
 
 
Workplaces will need asbestos inspectors to certify workspaces as safe for workers.  This is keeping with mandates set by the Occupation Health and Safety Administration.  Exposed asbestos in the workplace is a legal liability as well as a safety issue, so employers are best served by ensuring that workplaces are safe for workers.
 
 
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Idaho Asbestos Laws

Delaware Asbestos Laws