Asbestos was popularly used before 1990 in building materials. Over the years, it became less popular due to the discovery of its potential health risks. It was a strong substance with great heat resistant qualities and fireproofing properties. However, several studies showed its dangers to people's health caused by constant inhalation of its dust and fibers. Its negative impact on health is shown in a cancer study by the Cancer center at Vienna General Hospital, which revealed inhalation causes pleural cancer.
As a result, asbestos roof removal is important for eliminating any risks of contaminating deadly diseases from the inhalation of asbestos dust and fibers. Any people thinking of carrying out any renovations like increasing a room should hire a professional company to perform an asbestos removal process on the roof.
Methods of Identifying Asbestos Materials
One method of identifying asbestos in materials is visual inspection. But, it is not accurate unless the material is clearly labeled. The best way to identify the deadly substance is to hire a professional. He is qualified to identify the type of asbestos present on the roof and plan for any removal and disposal procedure.
Another method is sampling and testing. A professional will take a part of the roof as a sample for a thorough analysis. This part is probably the most dangerous as there is a higher chance of inhalation. This is because the asbestos has already been disturbed and the fibers released to the air. Therefore, a professional is equipped with the appropriate gear to prevent any inhalation. That is why people are discouraged from taking their own samples. A professional will also be able to identify bonded or non-friable asbestos and leave it as it was, undisturbed.
Procedures to Observe when Handling Asbestos :
- Always wear protective gear before handling asbestos.
- Sampling and testing are carried out without people present in the room.
- Try as much as possible not to disturb asbestos. Only take the required sample for testing.
- Eliminate any systems for air conditioning or heating to prevent further asbestos contamination in the atmosphere.
- Put a sheet (plastic) on the floor for sampling and testing and wet the sampling asbestos material to prevent any dust and fibers from contaminating the air.
- The sample should be carefully cut and placed in a container with a tight seal.
- Properly dispose the sheet and wipe the outer part of the sealed container with a damp towel.
- Label the sealed container and apply a duct tape on the area with the disturbed asbestos. This will help prevent further release of dust and fibers into the air.
- Send the asbestos sample to the local health laboratory.
Proper Management of Asbestos
Bonded or non-friable asbestos is usually harmless and should remain undisturbed. Friable asbestos, on the other hand, is very harmful and should be immediately removed or repaired. During removal, a professional will eliminate the asbestos from the roof eliminating the dangers of inhalation when fibers and dust are released into the air.
Repair, is not as commonly sought after as removal procedures. The repair procedure requires two methods, covering or sealing. Covering is done by placing a firm material like duct tape over the area containing asbestos. Sealing requires treatment of the asbestos with a sealant for binding or coating of the dangerous material to prevent fiber and dust release into the air.