Although it has been 16 years since asbestos was officially banned in Australia, there are commercial and residential facilities that still harbour the toxic material. As a new asbestos abatement company, your role in the removal and safe disposal of asbestos couldn't be more critical. It is especially the case if you consider the expert prediction that over 25000 people will die from asbestos-related illnesses over the next 40 years. That said, it is vital for recruits to observe care when removing asbestos from a building. However, there are some safety measures that a rookie might forget, but only to their detriment. This article highlights some of the subtle but crucial safety precautions that are related to asbestos abatement.
Use Low-Pressure Water Jets
The first task that an asbestos removal professional should do upon arrival at a site is to wet the surfaces. It is especially the case if you are dealing with friable asbestos that can quickly become airborne. However, you must be careful with the amount of pressure you use to wet the surfaces. If you set the water jet at high pressure to get the work done faster, you risk disturbing friable asbestos, thereby defeating the purpose of wetting asbestos-containing surfaces. Therefore, ensure that you set the water pressure low so that you do not disturb loose asbestos fragments.
Use Hand Tools
The list of power tools available for asbestos abatement companies to use is endless. For rookies, tools like handsaws and drills come in handy because they help to speed up the asbestos removal process involving wall panels or roofing. However, the downside of using power tools is that they lead to airborne asbestos dust. It is not only dangerous to the worker, but also the surrounding neighbourhood. Instead of power tools, use manual hand tools such as hammers and chisels. Manual tools will get the work done without causing airborne asbestos dust.
Dispose of Cleaning Materials
Once asbestos material is removed from a building, thorough cleaning of the surfaces is crucial so that they are ready for painting or some other form of finishing. Use wet mops and rags to clean up any asbestos residue on the surfaces affected, as well as on the tools used. However, most newbies forget to dispose of the cleaning accessories and leave them behind in the affected facility. If occupants in the building use the same rags or mops for their daily cleaning activities, then they will be exposing themselves to asbestos in the rags. Therefore, it doesn't matter whether the cleaning materials are new or not -- they must be disposed of together with the asbestos once the cleanup is done.