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All About Asbestos Removal

August 18th, 2014

Protect Your Property With Asbestos Abatement

If you’re undergoing a building construction or demolition project of any kind, dust, powder and other airborne particles are just a part of the process. However, if you’re disturbing building materials that contain asbestos, you could be contaminating your entire space with dangerous, microscopic fibers that have been linked to serious health issues. Asbestos signThat’s why asbestos-contaminated spaces require very specific and controlled abatement procedures to effectively clear a space of the hazardous material while leaving a healthy, safe environment behind.

As a part of our demolition services, Elite Waste Services offers professional asbestos removal for residential, commercial and industrial facilities throughout the Triangle. Learn more about asbestos below, including where it’s commonly found, the health risks it poses and how professional abatement contractors can help remove it.

What Is Asbestos?

Asbestos is a mineral fiber that was once added to a number of home products to provide heat insulation, fire resistance and strength. Most commonly found in insulation in older homes, asbestos is now a known carcinogen, and has been directly linked to diseases like mesothelioma and lung cancer. The Federal Environment Protection Agency, American Lung Association and several other organizations agree that asbestos should be removed from residential and commercial properties whenever possible.

Where Is Asbestos Commonly Found?

Thousands of products have been made with asbestos the years before the fibers were connected with serious health risks. Common building products known to contain asbestos include:
Roof sheeting asbestos

  • Roofing and siding materials
  • Insulation in buildings built between 1930 and 1950
  • Vinyl floor tiles, the backing on vinyl flooring tiles and in vinyl floor adhesives
  • Certain textured paints
  • Artificial ashes and embers sold for gas-fired fireplaces

Why is Asbestos So Dangerous?

When disturbed, asbestos can break down into tiny, microscopic, airborne fibers. When inhaled, these fibers can become lodged in the tissue of your lungs and digestive tract and will stay there because they’re too small for your body to break them down. Over time, these fibers can lead to disease including Asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.

How Can I Safely Remove Asbestos?

Asbestos is extremely dangerous to handle, which is why we urge you to leave the decontamination of your property to a team that is licensed and trained to follow extreme and necessary safety measures. OSHA and the EPA regulate how asbestos is to be removed from a property, with strict safety procedures including protective clothing and equipment, the isolation of dust, proper waste containment and more. If handled incorrectly, you could end up worsening exposure throughout your space, so it’s best to leave your property in the hands of trained professionals.

Asbestos particlesHow does that process begin? First, air samples are taken inside the work area to determine the level and source of asbestos exposure. When a contractor arrives to begin the removal process, that team will immediately establish the regulated work area and take necessary measures to isolate that space (using negative air pressure machines, enclosure systems and more, which remain in place until final air clearance). Workers must wear abatement suits, which include gloves, goggles, masks, boots and respiratory protection.

The affected material will be removed in a top-down fashion and placed into special disposal bags, starting with the more friable (crumbled or disturbed) materials first. Once all material has been removed, it will be placed in a specifically labeled dumpster with a protective poly covering to keep it secure until it arrives at the landfill.

After a series of vigorous cleanings and inspections, final air testing will be done in the affected area to confirm that all samples are satisfactory and that the contamination has been eliminated.

At Elite Waste Services, we have the experience, expertise and equipment needed to handle your asbestos abatement safely and effectively. Contact us today to learn more about our process. We serve buildings and facilities throughout the Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill areas.

Posted in Asbestos Removal on August 18th, 2014.