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Facts About Asbestos Soil Contamination

Since the 90s, asbestos has been known as a major cause of severe illnesses like pleural cancer and mesothelioma. This is because building materials before the 90s were made from asbestos, which happens to be a great fireproofing material. A research study in Vienna General Hospital confirms that this hazardous material causes damaging health problems.

Soil contamination by asbestos may occur in a number of ways. For starters, buildings constructed before the 90s containing asbestos materials may have contaminated the soil with the deadly substance. Another way asbestos can contaminate the soil is through disposing a top soil layer containing the substance into an area. This area may have been earlier used as a disposal ground.

Understanding Types Of Asbestos And Their Risk Levels
Asbestos comes in two categories, friable and non-friable. Friable asbestos is more fragile and dangerous than non-friable. This is because the dust and fibers contained in the asbestos are easily released into the air.

Constant inhalation of the asbestos is very harmful to one's health. The effects do not usually set in immediately, but after some years of inhalation. People who have been constantly inhaling asbestos dust and fibers eventually contract severe diseases with little to no cure eventually leading to death.

Non-friable asbestos, also known as bonded asbestos, is less harmful as long as it remains undisturbed. To ensure it remains undisturbed, the asbestos is sealed and covered to prevent any contamination of its dust and fibers. Duct tape, coating or sealant materials are used for this purpose.

It is always advisable to hire an expert to check for the type of asbestos to determine its nature, quantity and level risk it presents to the people around the affected area. Between the two types of asbestos, it is safe to say once an expert determines the asbestos is the friable type, he should perform a removal and disposal procedure immediately.

Disposal Methods
There are a number of methods for disposing asbestos soil contamination. One method is land filling where all the contaminated soil is removed and replaced with better soil. This method is one of the most effective, but also the most expensive. This is because it requires removal of a huge quantity of soil.

Another method is segregation where a portion of the soil contaminated with the hazardous substance is treated. This method is cheaper than land filling as instead of removing the soil, it is treated. This method is also money and time saving.

Both methods are delicate and require the skill of an expert in the field of asbestos removal. The wrong move may cause release of the asbestos fibers into the atmosphere and anyone without an appropriate protective gear may inhale the deadly substance. Experts also employ methods of monitoring any contaminated air to provide a management plan.

Management Of Asbestos In The Soil
First, other people who are not experts at handling asbestos removal should clear the area before any removal procedures begin. The expert then proceeds to take a sample for testing to determine the type of asbestos present in the soil. He then performs a removal and disposal procedure.

Moreover, he also monitors the asbestos in the air to find ways of controlling it while preventing people from inhaling it.
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