Asbestos Removal from Homes and Businesses
Asbestos is universally recognized as a health hazard and is highly regulated. The substance is a carcinogen that causes lung cancer and mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is highly aggressive and is resistant to many standard cancer treatment options. Asbestos was widely used until the 1970s in hundreds of building products because of its tensile strength, as well as its chemical and thermal resistance. Thus, it can be found in thousands of U.S. homes and commercial buildings.
An estimated 1.3 million employees in the construction trade and other industries face significant asbestos exposure on the job. The worst exposures occur in the construction industry, especially when asbestos is removed or disturbed during a building renovation or demolition. Employees also face exposure to asbestos during the manufacture of asbestos products including textiles, insulation and other building materials, and during automotive brake and clutch repair work, where asbestos products are commonly used.
Asbestos is extremely hazardous to workers who handle it and to others who happen to be in the area when it gets into the air and is inhaled into the lungs. Because of this hazard, laws have been enacted to prevent asbestos exposures. Many states have imposed asbestos notice and removal requirements:
- Building owners may be required to have their buildings inspected for asbestos before construction, renovation and demolition activities.
- Construction contractors – Before bidding or starting any construction work, contractors may have to obtain a written asbestos report from the building owner or owner’s agent.
- Homeowners are often exempt from these requirements but may be required to provide asbestos information to contractors and others that work in their homes.
Because of the dangers posed from handling asbestos, if you discover asbestos in your home or business, such as in the tiles or in the vermiculite insulation, you should never attempt to remove it on your own. Companies across the U.S. specialize in the removal of this hazardous substance.