Environmental Demolition Group specializes in select demolition services, including removing or abating hazardous materials from sites. Asbestos removal is one of our strong points. In today’s blog, we answer several asbestos FAQs.

What is asbestos?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral composed mainly of silicate, with heat-resistant and fire-resistant properties. 

How does asbestos cause cancer?

This naturally occurring causes cancer when small fibers lodge in the lungs and build up over time. These fibers can cause inflammation, scarring, and perhaps genetic damage that could lead to cancer. Mesothelioma is a type of rare and aggressive cancer that comes almost entirely from exposure to asbestos.

Cancer risk is why select demolition services must be performed by licensed companies.

How do you know if you are exposed to asbestos?

The most common signs of exposure include problems with the lungs, such as shortness of breath, coughing, and chest pain.

How long do you have to be exposed to asbestos to get mesothelioma?

Medical scientists and doctors believe the time interval between asbestos exposure to a possible diagnosis of mesothelioma from 20 to 50 years. Risk of this form of cancer goes down over time after exposure to the carcinogen stops. 

Who is at risk of exposure to asbestos?

Firefighters, construction workers, industrial and power plant workers, and shipyard workers are most at risk of exposure to this substance. 

Where is asbestos found?

Asbestos can be found in older building materials used in building projects, automobile parts, and shipbuilding from the 1930s to 1970s until the substance was banned in the use of new materials.

It was used in applications for insulation and protecting parts from high heat through the mid-1970s.

People can find asbestos in the following items:

  • Boilers
  • Brake components
  • Cement pipes
  • Clutch components
  • Electrical wire conduits
  • Heat-protective pads
  • Insulation
  • Laboratory furniture
  • Paper products
  • Pipe coverings and insulation
  • Roofing products and materials, such as tiles
  • Sealants and coating
  • Textiles, including curtains
  • Transmission components

Any buildings, ships, and automobiles constructed before 1975 may have some kind of asbestos in them.

Companies can still use it in the United States, so long as materials contain less than 1 percent of the mineral.

How can you protect yourself from asbestos in old buildings?

Select demolition services typically mean going into a building and removing (abating) asbestos. Workers must take extraordinary precautions to prevent exposure to this substance.

Workers handling asbestos must wear:

  • Respirators equipped with filters specifically designed to keep asbestos from getting into the lungs.
  • Safety goggles or glasses to protect eyes from falling debris.
  • Disposable coveralls to keep debris off of someone’s body.
  • Rubber boots to protect from sharp objects.
  • Disposable gloves to protect from sharp objects.

Following work on a site, everyone who handled this mineral must decontaminate and wash equipment, personal protective equipment, and any exposed skin.

Who should perform asbestos removal?

Only licensed and certified companies should perform abatement and removal of these items. 

Environmental Demolition Group is a leading service provider for hazardous and non-hazardous waste disposal, including select demolition of buildings in need of renovation due to asbestos-containing structures.
Our staff understands the importance of safety when it comes to asbestos removal.

Contact our office or call 859-363-4863 to learn more about our safety procedures, licenses, and protocols for asbestos abatement.