The construction industry underwent significant development over the last century. One of the critical improvements involved identifying hazardous materials and imposing a ban. In the UK, one such material is asbestos. And while most people are already aware of its dangers, it’s surprising to know that a complete ban only took effect in 1999.
But despite the ban, asbestos-related illnesses and deaths still occur. Because of the widespread use of this material, many buildings and homes in the country still contain asbestos. If a building or house is suspected to contain asbestos, the UK government requires asbestos sampling to be conducted. The process is thorough because the report includes essential details such as asbestos type and composition.
How do you know that a home or building might contain asbestos?
The first thing that might indicate that asbestos is present is the date of construction. Every home or building built before 2000 is likely a suspect. But, there shouldn’t be a reason to panic right away. The reason why you need to conduct a survey is to determine the risk of the material to the occupant’s health.
Usually, asbestos shouldn’t be a problem if it’s undisturbed. Once the fibers are released into the air, that’s when it becomes a health hazard. Unfortunately, some unsuspecting individuals could do something that might disturb the asbestos.
What to do if you suspect asbestos is present in your home
As soon as you think that there’s a possibility there might be asbestos in your building or home, you need to contact an asbestos removal company. The first thing they will do is conduct a detailed survey and sampling. The problem with asbestos is that you can’t always tell it’s there. A survey is the only conclusive way to know the extent, type, and recommended next steps.
What happens if a survey confirms asbestos presence?
If the survey conducted verifies that there’s asbestos, there’s no need to worry yet. The survey company will recommend whether or not removal is necessary. Asbestos removal is required when:
- There are signs of damage or the building is already deteriorating.
- If the condition, type, and location of asbestos pose a significant risk to occupants.
- If the location of asbestos will likely result in disturbance or damage.
On the other hand, there’s no need to remove asbestos when the area surveyed is still intact or in good condition. Also, depending on the type or location, the survey concludes that it poses minimal risk to health. If the location is mostly undisturbed or out of reach, then it’s best to leave it as is.
The asbestos removal company will also record asbestos that’s been left in place. The recording is necessary in case they may need to remove it later on. Additionally, they may put a protective covering over the area to ensure that fibers don’t escape into the air. These necessary precautions are critical to monitor the condition of the building. As a homeowner or building occupant, it’s your responsibility to notify a removal company right away if a survey is needed or when you think that asbestos may be present.