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Avoiding the Harmful Effects of Asbestos Exposure

Date Added: November 20, 2011 04:35:12 PM
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Category: Asbestos Resources and Information

Avoiding the Harmful Effects of Asbestos Exposure

Asbestos exposure is something that can pose a risk to our health and wellbeing, as such we should learn how to avoid and identify asbestos risks.


You can be exposed to asbestos in your own house or in an office building, factory, shopping mall or any number of commercial buildings, even though the buildings which have been constructed before the year 1986 are required to be tested.


Some structures have higher risks of being contaminated compared to others, structures and buildings that have been erected prior to the 1980s are of special interest.


It is commonly found in paneling and tiles, ducts containing electrical wiring or similar, internal parts of boxes and circuit breakers, linoleum tiles, water pipe insulators also in cars used in brake pads, clutch linings or engine insulators.


The decorative ceilings which have been famous during the 70s and 80s also contain asbestos, during and prior the early 80s the utilization of insulation that contained asbestos was widely used due to its low price, availability and its high insulation properties. Taking this into consideration testing should be done whenever we encounter material that is a candidate as contaminated or containing asbestos in order to avoid the risks of asbestos exposure.

One good way of avoiding asbestos exposure is by wearing the protective clothing, dust mask or correct breathing apparatus whenever dealing with asbestos contaminant, whenever we find ourselves close to buildings containing asbestos while they are being demolished, you will see the demolition crews dressed in the correct protective gear as they also try to avoid or minimize the exposure to dangerous asbestos fibers.


Once disturbed asbestos fibers can stay airborne for many hours, avoid the area for as long as possible and call a professional to assess the danger of exposure and if need be test the air for asbestos fiber contamination. Asbestos removal crew may need to be called, they will take all the necessary precautions using such equipment as positive air pressure pumps  forcing air to rooms which contain these friable asbestos fibers thus allowing the operators to breathe uncontaminated air through the breathing apparatus . Using industrial strength vacuums with sophisticated filtering system the fibers are removed. Also plastic “tunnels” may be erected to protect the operators as well as all of those that may be in the immediate vicinity.

Additionally in some cases asbestos exposure can also be avoided through hiring a team specializing in abatement which will remove all materials with asbestos content. If the material’s removal is not possible, special coatings can be used by the team for the fibers to be encapsulated, this will in turn prevent the possibility of fibers getting airborne.


We should be aware that risks of inhaling asbestos fibers are lower when the contaminant is not damaged or disturbed, for example, linoleum floor tiles may contain asbestos, and this in itself is of limited concern till the tiles are disturbed or damaged releasing microscopic asbestos fibers in to the air we breathe.


Avoiding exposure to asbestos fibers is of a paramount importance, do not ignore asbestos in your home or a work place, whenever in doubt consult with professionals, if you do feel that you have been exposed to asbestos at any time in your life (no matter when) consult your physician immediately to assess your condition well before the symptoms arise.