Asbestos exposure during property remodeling or demolition is shockingly common, and negligent contractors or homeowners can put themselves and their families at risk of serious health consequences.
By taking the steps to properly assess a property for asbestos and selecting only qualified professionals, you can ensure that your home or business is safe from any hazardous materials.
Here’s what you’ll want to keep in mind:
Reviewing the Risks
Asbestos is a hazardous material that can cause serious health problems for those exposed to it.
“Asbestos fibers may be released into the air by the disturbance of asbestos-containing material during product use, demolition work, building or home maintenance, repair, and remodeling,” according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). “In general, exposure may occur only when the asbestos-containing material is disturbed or damaged in some way to release particles and fibers into the air.”
For example, asbestosis is a long-term condition caused by breathing in too much asbestos and this can lead to respiratory failure. Additionally, mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer that can be caused by asbestos exposure, and this can be fatal if not treated promptly. What makes these conditions worse is that they don’t develop for 20 or more years, long after your remodel is complete!
Due to the serious health risks posed by asbestos, it is vital that testing for its presence in any building you own and are planning to remodel or repair is done properly. Not only can you be exposed but a reported “1.3 million U.S. workers in construction and general industry are at risk of exposure today.”
An Overview of the Assessment Process
There are several steps involved in the asbestos survey process, including gathering evidence, taking samples, analyzing the results, and determining a plan of action.
The first step in an asbestos survey is gathering evidence. This involves inspecting the property and taking photos of any areas that appear to contain asbestos-containing materials (ACM).
The surveyor will also review the building’s history and any available documentation, such as construction plans or maintenance records, to determine if there have been any previous renovations or work that could have introduced asbestos into the building.
Next, samples of suspected ACM will be taken and sent to a laboratory for analysis. The level of asbestos content in each sample is determined using specialized equipment and techniques designed to detect even trace amounts of asbestos. Once the results are received, the surveyor can begin formulating a plan of action to address any hazards posed by the presence of asbestos.
Calling a Qualified Professional
Ultimately, it is important that you refrain from performing an asbestos survey on your own, as there are several risks associated with not using a qualified professional.
Surveyors receive specialized training and have access to more accurate testing methods and equipment than typical DIY approaches. Additionally, improperly conducted surveys can lead to inaccurate results that could put people at risk of asbestos exposure.
Not sure if you’re hiring someone who is qualified to perform an asbestos survey? Remember: In the state of Florida, the person you hire must be…
- Under the direct supervision of a licensed asbestos consultant AND have their business licensed as an asbestos business with that licensed asbestos consultant registered as a qualifying agent for your company.
Asbestos credentials in Florida can be verified HERE.
Otherwise, one of the most reliable ways to ensure you’re calling a qualified professional is to reach out to your locally trusted indoor environmental experts Luce Air Quality!
After all, Dave Luce has officially completed his National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) 582 certification, meaning our team is ready to provide you with enhanced asbestos services!
Ready to learn more about our expertise and how we can help you overcome asbestos concerns? Simply reach out to our team today by calling 904-803-1014!