The first week of April, 2014, was the Global Asbestos Awareness Week. Not only is the exposure to asbestos a problem in the United States, but asbestos has been used throughout the world. In the past, asbestos was used in a variety of products to strengthen them, provide fire resistance and to provide heat insulation. Since the 1970s, most manufacturing and processing of asbestos in the Untied States has been banned (in the form of amphiboles). There is, however, asbestos chrysotile fibre that is still commercialized.
Asbestos refers to six unique substances that belong to the serpentine and amphibole mineral families. This mineral based fibre has been widely used in building materials due to its resistance to heat and corrosive chemicals. Asbestos is not a mineral in itself. It is a collective term given to a group of minerals whose crystals occur in fibrous forms. The term asbestos was adopted for commercial identification. The three main types of asbestos are: chrysotile, amosite and crocidolite. Typically, asbestos appears as a whitish, fibrous material. The fibres can range in texture from coarse to silky. Asbestos fibres can go airborne and they can be too small to see with the naked eye.
Asbestos is used in residential buildings because of the thermal insulation, acoustical insulation, fire protection and the strengthening of other materials.
Exposure to inhaled asbestos dust can be dangerous to health. It causes lung cancer. Even breathing in small, invisible quantities of asbestos is known to cause cancer 20 to 30 years down the road. Mesothelioma is the type of cancer associated with asbestos exposure. Mesothelioma develops in the thin membrane lining of the lungs and abdomen. This type of cancer is always fatal. People who have been exposed to asbestos have been known to have increased rates of esophageal cancer, stomach cancer, large intestinal cancer and rectum cancer.
Dealing with asbestos is very dangerous. This is why there are trained and accredited asbestos professionals. The state of California requires all contractors and employees who work on asbestos projects (that involve more than 100 square feet with a concentration of more than 0.1% asbestos) to register with the Asbestos Contractors? Registration Unit.
To stay certified, a worker must complete an initial course and annual renewal courses. All of these courses must be completed with a certified training facility that adheres to strict regulations and rules.
The 5 asbestos ?disciplines? are:
A licensed professional with specialized equipment must be hired for the job. By using a polarized light microscope, lab technicians can examine a sample and determine whether or not the sample is dangerous. There are 38 certified laboratories in California that are permitted to test for asbestos.
Asbestos removal is very dangerous. Therefore, professionals take huge?precautions to make sure the material is removed safely. Here are some of the steps to remove the dangerous material.
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