When you find out that asbestos may be present in your building, it can be scary. It’s why we work with our customers to understand not only the risks of asbestos but also how we deal with containing and removing asbestos in the process known as asbestos abatement. It’s a process that is – while requiring attention to detail and rigorous training and safety standards – relatively simple in the broad strokes. In this article, we’ll walk you through the four major steps of asbestos abatement.
Step One: Inspection and Risk Assessment
The first step to dealing with asbestos is to find it. By the time you talk to an asbestos abatement specialist, you may already know about the presence of asbestos from previous information, discovery, or location by a contractor. Either way, the asbestos removal company will look to answer these three questions:
- Is asbestos present? Looking for the presence, quantity, and type of asbestos.
- Does the asbestos pose a risk? The risk that asbestos will be disturbed during repair, renovations, or demolitions, or poses a risk now.
- From where and how does the asbestos need to be removed? Looking at how much of the building will need to be involved in asbestos abatement.
Step Two: Prepping for Asbestos Abatement
The next step is for the asbestos professional to get started on isolating the problem by containing the dangerous fibers. This includes sealing off the work areas with special sheeting, tape, and other materials, as well as prepping protective gear for technicians, including respirators and protective suits.
Step Three: Asbestos Removal, Encapsulation, and Demolition
There are three major options when it comes to asbestos abatement. Removal; which concerns itself with removing the asbestos-containing materials (ACMs). Encapsulation; which focuses on sealing away the asbestos so it cannot cause exposure. And demolition; which may be used in certain circumstances where ACMs and other material must be removed together. Learn more about all three in our blog: Encapsulate, Remove, or Demolish Asbestos: When to Do Which?
Step Four: Final Testing for Hazards
Once the asbestos has been removed or encapsulated, it’s time to form a final round of testing and risk assessment. After testing shows that the property is free from asbestos contaminates, the abatement is over. If there was work such as renovations or demolitions lined up, they can now continue.
It’s time to put your fears to rest and get your building tested for asbestos. Fiber Control, Inc. specializes in procedures for dealing with asbestos and other hazardous materials. If you’re in Massachusetts or New Hampshire and need asbestos inspection and abatement, we can help. Contact us today.