Asbestos is one of the most heavily regulated substances in the U.S. It is very common to find it in drywall, insulation, floor tiles and many other building materials, especially in structures built prior to 1980. If you discover asbestos is present in your building, are you required to remove it? The short answer to that question is no. However, as a building owner you have certain responsibilities regarding the management of the asbestos.
Asbestos containing building materials that remain in good condition, properly maintained and left undisturbed are not considered hazardous. These building materials can become hazardous when disturbed through renovation, repair or deterioration.
Steps to Take
The first step is to hire a licensed inspector to survey your structure to see if asbestos is present. If the asbestos is damaged, it is critical to have it removed by a licensed professional immediately. There are generally two options to consider once asbestos has been identified in your facility. If the asbestos containing building materials are found to be in good condition by the inspector, they can be managed in place. Proper management of these materials should be measurable and can include the installation and maintenance of physical barriers to the materials, monitoring the conditions of the asbestos containing building materials, and periodic re-inspection of the areas. The management program should include the appointment of a responsible party as the program manager. The role of the responsible party would be to inform occupants about the asbestos, monitor the condition of the materials and develop a plan of action should the materials deteriorate over time. If the materials are found to be damaged, they should be removed by a properly accredited and licensed professional.
Our licensed asbestos personnel have the experience and knowledge to help you determine the best course of action, and to ensure you are in compliance with state and federal regulations. Contact us to schedule your inspection or to learn about our additional environmental services.