Asbestos Awareness can Save Lungs and Lives
Asbestos is a natural substance that has numerous applications within the construction industry. It was initially used as a heat-resistant material in ships, airplanes and residential structures. Over the years asbestos has been linked to lung cancers, such as mesothelioma. It has now been banned from use in construction in most countries in the world. Major health organizations warn people to stay away from asbestos in any form. If residents are concerned about potential asbestos in their homes, they can take a close look at this basic checklist. Being aware of asbestos exposure improves everyone’s health in the immediate area.
• Be Observant
Asbestos can be hiding in numerous areas around any home built before 1980. Popcorn ceilings, furnace-door gaskets and cement wallboard are a few of the materials that house hidden asbestos. Carefully examine these areas for asbestos, but do not touch the materials.
• Test the Materials
During those critical observations, a material might present itself as a harmful substance. Document its location and contact local authorities. When asbestos is suspected, trained professionals can make an accurate determination. These tests typically include sampling of the area. A removal plan becomes part of the project if the items turn out to be positive for asbestos.
• Learn About Undisturbed Asbestos
Some asbestos is a permanent part of the structure and is entirely undisturbed. In these cases, the substance isn’t harmful as the asbestos remains as a solid material. If the fibers don’t have the ability to break off and harm a person’s respiratory system, there’s no need to remove the material. A typical mesothelioma lawsuit depends on airborne fibers that can damage the lungs.
• Don’t Start a Project
If homeowners are planning on a structural project, don’t begin the demolition phase until the property is entirely clear of asbestos. Avoid the use of drills, sanding machines and other tools. Disturbing structural materials can cause the asbestos to break off and harm any nearby people including children playing in or around the home.
• Observe Disturbed Asbestos
Make a note of any confirmed areas that are disturbed. Asbestos dust can become airborne with just one breeze moving through the home. Residents must let professionals fix or replace the materials with safe alternatives.
• Don’t Clean the Area
Leave the area untouched until the asbestos is removed from the structure. Trying to sweep or vacuum around the materials will only disturb them further. Any disruptions create harmful scenarios where asbestos fills the air.
• Vacate the Premises
Ideally, residents should leave the property when the asbestos is being professionally removed. Workers wear protective gear as they complete the project. Anyone in the immediate vicinity can be negatively impacted by the removal work. Be overly cautious in this situation. Spend the day at a friend’s house or take a short vacation. The home will be perfectly clean afterward.
If a person suspects asbestos in any structure, contacting local authorities is critical. Trained personnel know how to remove the fibers with minimal impact on the surrounding environment. With each removal project, fewer people will be affected by these harmful fibers.
Please Note – Cambridge Masks are not suitable for working with asbestos, please purchase an asbestos – specific respirator for dealing with this dangerous substance.