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Independent Environmental Consultants
Asbestos, Mold Lead Paint, Bacteria, Water Intrusion
Solving Structural Environmental Issues
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Westlife Environmental LLC -
How do I find out if there’s asbestos in my building, and if my employees may
be at risk?
While asbestos can be hidden in a wide array of building materials the human body is not at risk unless the fibers can be inhaled or ingested.This means that unless asbestos is disturbed or in poor condition it does not normally pose a risk to human health.
Asbestos disturbance can come from renovations, maintenance, or disturbance of poor condition Asbestos Containing Materials (ACM). Even the air flow and/or vibrations from the building’s HVAC system can cause a poor condition ACM to become airborne, or degrade it so that it may become airborne.
It means that knowing where your asbestos is, what condition it is in, and your options for dealing with it are imperative for a building owner or lessee.
Since asbestos is NOT visible to the human eye, and because the variety of materials that asbestos has been (and still is) used in is so great, there is no way to look at any material and state whether that material contains asbestos or not.
Samples of suspect materials must be taken and sent to an accredited lab for analysis
to know whether asbestos lies within a material or not. Without this sampling the
EPA regulations state that a material is then to be ASSUMED to BE asbestos and treated
as such -
Much of the vermiculite used for insulation in buildings is asbestos contaminated
The only way to actually know if your building contains asbestos, and the extent of risk involved if it does, is to have a whole building Asbestos Survey completed.
During an Asbestos Survey a thorough examination of the entire building is completed. Any and ALL suspect materials are located, sampled, analyzed and quantified for volume and condition. This gives you a complete view of the hazards that may or may not be present.
Additionally, if you have an Asbestos Management Plan written, you will also then
have full documentation of what to do to maintain these ACM, and if the conditions
I can already hear the objections
But if you take into account the expense of an employee (or multiple employees) being affected by asbestos exposure; knowing your risks, having a plan in effect to deal with the inevitable changes in asbestos’ condition, and dealing with exposure events properly can be MUCH cheaper than the regulatory, legal and medical ramifications of NOT knowing your risk exposure.
any material NOT tested →MUST be ASSUMED to contain asbestos
→until it is PROVEN not to contain asbestos
So while inspecting and testing may be pricey -
There is no reason that good condition ACM needs to be removed, It can be maintained
indefinitely, if done safely and properly. And -
To manage your risks -
Give us a call. We’ll let you know the information we need before we can give you a bid for these services.