Asbestos Information.- Please take from my hub anything that may be of help.
I've set up this page in an effort to help anyone who may have come into contact with asbestos throughout their working lives. Read through it and take from this what ever you may need. I've covered topics from what exactly Asbestos is right up to removal companies who will remove Asbestos safely under certified guidelines.
I will be setting up an online group for anyone who worked during the 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's and 80's who may have come into contact with Asbestos without knowing it. This can be viewed at Cancer and Your Health
Mesothelomia is now recognised by Governments as a chronic lung disease brought on by Asbestosis and for this reason funding and compensation may now be available.
As one Government Minister recently stated - ''Suffering from Mesothelomia is like being dragged through the gates of hell''...
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is the name given to a group of minerals that naturally occur in the environment as bundles of fibers that can be separated into thin, durable threads. It comes in 3 different types:
- Blue asbestos - crocidolite
- Brown asbestos - amosite
- White asbestos - chrysotile
These fibers are resistant to fire,heat, and chemicals and do not conduct electricity. For these reasons, asbestos has been used widely in many industries throughout the world.
Chemically, asbestos minerals are silicate compounds, meaning they contain atoms of silicon and oxygen in their molecular structure.
A cross section of a piece of Asbestos.
How is Asbestos used?
I remember a few years ago working selling car parts and the brake pads,brake shoes and clutch kits contained Asbestos. The building I worked in more than likely contained an Asbestos ceiling and even the walls were probably painted with paint containing Asbestos.
So how does Asbestos affect your health?
Asbestos is breathed into the lungs where the fibers become trapped and can remain for a long time. Over time these fibers can build up causing swelling and scarring which then affects a persons breathing thus leading to health problems.
Where asbestos can be found.
Fibrous asbestos products such as pipe lagging can contain up to 90% asbestos. Bonded products, where the asbestos fibres are bound into the cement, contain low amounts of asbestos (10-15%) e.g. asbestos cement sheets. Asbestos was used in an innumerable amount of products, but the most common are:
· lagging used in insulation of pipes and boilers
· asbestos packing pieces used as fire breaks in voids
· paper lining used for insulation of electrical equipment
· sprayed asbestos used in ducts, fire breaks, structural steelwork
· ceiling panels, partitions and soffit boards
· insulation boards used for fire protection
· asbestos cement products e.g. flue pipes, flat or corrugated sheets, rainwater goods and water tanks
· vinyl floor tiles and bitumen adhesive
How to deal with asbestos
The type and condition of the ACM will dictate how it should be treated. If asbestos is in good condition and is unlikely to be disturbed, then it is safe to leave it in place and carry out periodical inspections. ACM’s that are damaged can either be encapsulated (sealed) or removed.
Brown and blue asbestos are high-risk and their treatment or removal are subject to more stringent legislation and must be carried out by a competent asbestos contractor. Notification of the works must also be submitted to the Health and Safety Authority as soon as possible before the work can be carried out. The more notice you can give, the better.
How Asbestos affects the body.
Removal and disposal of asbestos
Removing asbestos is a complex procedure and must only be done by a contractor who has the necessary training and certification. Improper removal increases the risk of fibre inhalation.
You should contact you local authority for full advice and only hand over asbestos to local authority waste handlers or to someone who has a permit from the local authority to handle such waste. Local authorities have control over municipal dumps in this most countries and determine what can or cannot be placed in their dumps. NEVER dispose of asbestos illegally!
Below are a few companies and contact details who specialise the in safe removal of Asbestos.
AG & M Sheffield 0114 2766892
Asbestos Environmental Services Ltd Essex 01702 611154
Avalon Insulation Services Ltd Port Talbot 01639 890746
Breval Environmental Glasgow 0141 883 4762
Controlled Asbestos Removal Wakefield 01924 232 600
Dorton Asbestos West Sussex 01444 253333
Easy Move Asbestos Ltd Nottingham 0115 929 8520
Gloucester Asbestos Specialist Ltd Gloucester 01452 536902
JC Asbestos Solutions Ltd Lancashire 01772 610730
McGee Asbestos Removal Ltd Middlesex 020 89 981101
Northern Asbestos Services Ltd Moray 01343 552550
Philpott Asbestos Management Norfolk 01953 498298
Roberts Asbestos Management Ltd Somerset 01278 422521
The Asbestos & Insulation Company Kent 01634 232221
Tinnelly Environmental Co. Down, N. Ireland 028 30 265331