Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber that has commonly been used for a variety of building materials in the construction industry for insulation and fire-retardant applications. Due to the overall strength, heat-resistant properties, and live expectancy it has bene used in packaging, gaskets, coatings, linings, manufactured goods, and friction products. When asbestos materials are damaged or disturbed, there is a potential that the microscopic fibers become airborne and can cause significant health effects if inhaled into the lungs.
- If the very small asbestos fibers are inhaled deep into your lungs, and stay, they can cause disease 10 to 40 years later
- Asbestosis (a lung disease) is a long-term inflammation and scarring of the lungs due to asbestos fibers.
- Symptoms may include shortness of breath, cough, wheezing, and chest pains.
- Mesothelioma (a rare type of cancer) is a malignant tumor caused by inhaled asbestos fibers, and forms in the lining of the lungs, abdomen or heart.
- Symptoms may include shortness of breath and chest pain.
- Non-friable, any material that when dry, can not be crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder and is not capable of being released into the air by hand pressure. Includes transite, roof and floor materials.
- Friable, any material that when dry, can be crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder or capable of being released into the air by hand pressure. Includes pipe, fittings, and duct insulation, applied ceiling, fireproofing, and paper wrap (pipes & ducts).
- Only trained and licensed employees are allowed to remove asbestos containing materials.
- Only trained and licensed employees are able to sample potential asbestos containing materials.
- Do not assume materials do not have asbestos containing materials based off of tricks of the trade.
- Just because metal is not corrugated, doesn’t have pan head screws, or the look of the insulation doesn’t appear to be asbestos, doesn’t mean it is not asbestos.
Verify with customer or safety department prior to removal of insulation.