Light industry and construction are the two major sources of asbestos contamination in New Hampshire. Although the dangers of asbestos are public knowledge now asbestos containing materials were widely used throughout the 20th century, often with the owners and suppliers well aware of potential health risks. Power plants and public buildings were frequent sources of asbestos containing material and today pose the highest risk of possible contamination if abatement is not carried out. Current New Hampshire asbestos laws follow federal mandates to minimize exposure to harmful materials, provide disposal areas for asbestos containing materials and certifying and training workers to in proper asbestos abatement procedure.
Asbestos in the workplace
Asbestos is useful as insulation as it does not burn and can withstand high heat before disintegrating. The issue however, it that the insulation will erode with time and in the process release thousands of trapped fibers. Tight and enclosed workspaces such as factories and power plants will have had high concentrations of asbestos fibers. Many power plants in New Hampshire use this insulation and the workers should have their health monitored regularly. The occupational safety and health administration has set specific rules for dealing with dangerous asbestos contamination in the workplace and this is reflected in New Hampshire asbestos laws.
New Hampshire asbestos law enforcement
The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services handles the licensing of asbestos professionals and the collection of permits. This department will also provide education on a number of asbestos related topics and helpful links for homeowners and others that are unclear of New Hampshire asbestos laws, particularly laws pertaining to individual asbestos abatement in the home. Single family homes are generally not subject to the stringent requirements placed on other structures.
All other structures are required to provide advance notification of any procedure involving demolition or renovation. This notification form will include sections to account for the amount and type of asbestos in the building, as well as contact information for the asbestos contractor, method of removal and disposal site for the ACMs.
Asbestos and structure demolition
Almost all demolitions of structures containing asbestos have the potential to release harmful fibers, which is why even non-friable material that may crumble must be removed from the structure prior to demolition. Crumbling asbestos materials are classified as Category II ACMs by the federal government and New Hampshire asbestos law mandates their removal.
Can I remove asbestos on my own?
You may but you must also be aware of the potential hazards of doing so. Improperly cleaning of residue or removing friable material, will exposure you and all others in the residence to the asbestos fibers.
There are a number of Superfund sites and other areas that have contaminated workers in New Hampshire. You may sue previous employers for damages if you have developed an asbestos related illness and can prove that the employer did not take adequate precautions to protect and inform workers of the dangers of the asbestos material present in the workplace.