Asbestos has been around in most buildings in Australia. Whether in roof shingles, floor coverings or ventilation ducts – asbestos is still slumbering in many houses and apartments.
Since asbestos fibres and their fine dust represent considerable risks to health and the environment, strict regulations apply to dealing with the building material which has been popular until the 1980s. In order to protect themselves against criminal prosecutions for environmental reasons, consumers should be particularly conscientious in the case of asbestos settlements.
This article provides you with some information you need to know about dealing with the dangerous material and keeping you and your family from the asbestos exposure risk.
Asbestos exposure cases in Australia
The number of asbestos exposure cases in Australia is considered as high compared to other countries in the world. Up to 31 May 2017, The Australian Mesothelioma Registry has received 700 reports of asbestos-related diseases from 1 January-31 December 2016. The agency also received a report of 575 deaths caused by mesothelioma in the same year.
Most of these victims are male, which has reached an incidence rate of 4.2-5.3 per 100,000 population.
Age at exposure and frequency
As reported by Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency from its annual survey, just over 70% of reported first exposure cases occurred under the age of 40, particularly before the age of 20, which reached 22%. About 50% of these were occupational exposures. The other age groups that suffer from occupational exposures are significantly higher as well.
As in the previous financial year, the most commonly reported frequency of exposure was five years or more at approximately 33%. While approximately 28% of exposures of 0–6 months.
Just over one-third of respondents reporting frequency of exposure of more than five years and more than two years to five years reported first exposure at less than 20 years of age (just under 22% of participants). This figure declines significantly for the other age groups, where frequency of exposure is greater for the periods up to two years.
In order not to endanger yourself and your surroundings, you should first consult a specialist before handing in an older building. It does not even have to be a complete renovation, the installation of a new heating system or the installation of an electrical system should be the reason for an asbestos test.
1. Asbestos Analysis
The first step of an upcoming asbestos repair is the analysis of the existing building structure. The difficulty of asbestos fibres is that they are invisible and can only be detected by a material or dust test in the laboratory. It’s therefore recommended that you put the examination into the hands of a specialist.
2. Commissioning of a specialist firm for asbestos recovery
Where asbestos is installed in your house, for example in the form of asbestos cement slabs on the roof, and you want to remove this material, look for companies approved for asbestos removal. The company should be able to provide evidence of how to deal with asbestos and know the current regulations. In addition, it must be suitably equipped with both personnel and safety.
This includes, for example, the fact that the craftsmen wear protective suits and breathing masks during the measures. Get different offers and compare them with a reasonable price/performance ratio.
3. Demolition, remediation and maintenance work
After the preparations have been completed, the actual restoration measures begin. There are three types of work:
- Demolition work, in which the components, for example, the roof, are completely dismantled, and the asbestos products are completely removed.
- In particular, the weakly bound asbestos products are coated or spatially separated. Provisional construction measures are also included.
- Maintenance work, which includes the maintenance, inspection and repair of a component.
In any case, the company specialising in asbestos remediation is concerned with all activities related to these measures. They decide, in accordance with the current regulations, how to deal with the solid or weakly bound asbestos products. The aim is always to keep as few fibres as possible and thus to avoid any risk to the householder or environment.
In asbestos roofing, the contractor first removes the asbestos panels with which the roof is covered. They use dust-binding means or spraying systems to counteract contamination with asbestos. In order to avoid a release of the fibres, the plates must not be damaged during dismantling.
They must therefore not be thrown but must be carefully transported downwards by means of a hoist. They then store the building material in bags intended for this purpose. These so-called big bags consist of a dust-proof plastic fabric.
4. Asbestos disposal
There are also strict laws for the disposal of asbestos boards or other asbestos-containing materials. They must be stored in suitable containers which are safe for humans and the environment and can be tightly closed. It is not legally permitted to crush or chop asbestos products. As a result, the fine fibres get into the air.
To dispose of the asbestos, the specialist company uses tear-resistant plastic bags (big bags) or other dust-tight packagings. Transport to the landfill is subject to strict rules. In this way, the specialists ensure that no fibres are released by adequately securing the dangerous goods. A special landfill, which is officially approved, finally dispose of asbestos.
The best place to seek the help you need
Clear Asbestos Removal Sydney is an authority site, which is dedicated to provide a full and comprehensive information and resource in managing an asbestos contamination problem. Moreover, Clear Asbestos Removal Sydney also support the public with adequate help from licensed contractors around the region.
You can get your contamination problem solved in no time. Visit asbestoswatchsydney.com.au to get the support that you require. Keep your family safe and start your action to get a life free from asbestos danger.