When a property owner knows or has reason to suspect that asbestos is present in their property, they must have an asbestos inspection prior to doing any renovation work. If they fail to do so, demolition may result in workers being exposed to the deadly fibers or the asbestos fibers contaminating public areas.
Asbestos inspections must be completed by a certified and properly-trained professional who will wear proper protective equipment when taking samples. Even if the inspector is pretty sure he or she has located asbestos material, there is a requirement under state and federal law to send those samples to a lab that is equipped to examine the material under a microscope in a safe environment. The lab will not only confirm the presence of asbestos, but will also be able to determine the specific type of asbestos. This is important, because, while all types of asbestos pose a serious hazard to humans, some are more likely to be inhaled than others.
According to a recent news article from My Central Jersey, a major asbestos abatement project is now underway in the historic Five Corners Building, which has also been called Amboy Towers during certain years of its existence. The building was constructed in 1929 and is a large 10 story triangle that takes up the entire city block. As of now, the top five floors are vacant, and the new owner wants to fully renovat the building to remove the asbestos and turn those five stories in 50 new apartments for senior citizens. The lower floors are all being used by professionals such as lawyers and accountants for office space.
The new owner, who had wanted to purchase the building for decades and only recently got the opportunity, said there is asbestos in and around many of the heat pipes and in the floor tiles. As our Boston mesothelioma attorneys can explain, pipes and pipe insulation have been some of the more common sources for asbestos exposure over the years. Asbestos was used in some actual pipes as part of the material and has been used in sheeting to wrap heat pipes in countless applications.
The reason for the asbestos pipe insulation is that it is able to keep the heat from escaping as it travels through the pipe, thus seriously reducing heating costs. However, the insulation will break down over the years to the point where it is capable of being crushed under the power of the human hand. When asbestos is capable of being crushed under the power of the human hand, it is known as friable asbestos.
The new owner said the floor tiles currently have no airborne asbestos, but that will not be the case when they are removed. When the asbestos abatement project gets fully underway, they will have to put protective sheeting and use vacuums with HEPA filters to capture the dust. Workers will need to wear respirators and proper protective equipment and wet the asbestos to prevent dust. They will then have to place the wet material in approved plastic containers so a toxic waste facility can pick it up.
If you or a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
Asbestos removal underway at 5 Corners Building in Perth Amboy, November 28, 2016, By Susanne Russell, My Central Jersey
More Blog Entries:
New Effort to Strengthen Asbestos Litigation, June 28, 2016, Boston Mesothelioma Lawyer Blog