Exposure to asbestos poses a serious health risk, which is why the use of building materials containing asbestos has long been banned in the construction industry. At present, asbestos is being continually removed from homes that were built before the late 1980s – the time prior to the complete ban of asbestos.
Why Asbestos Needs to Be Removed
Initially, asbestos was thought to be a useful material for preventing fires; however, it was later found that it was hazardous to human health. Inhalation of asbestos had led to several cases of lung cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma, which resulted in deaths. For this very reason, the government has put a stop to the use of asbestos in homes.
While most of the cases of medical conditions resulting from exposure to asbestos happened several decades ago, until today, the risks remain the same. Hence, the total removal of asbestos has become an important measure. Not every homeowner is aware of certain damages in the walls, ceilings or even floor tiles that may be causing the residents to be exposed to asbestos, so it is safer that the entire material is taken out altogether.
The Dangers of Removing Asbestos
Removal of asbestos materials isn’t an easy task, however. Incorrect handling will mean unnecessary exposure – either through inhalation or skin contact. Both of which can cause harm either to your respiratory system or your skin (growth of warts).
And if you don’t know how much asbestos is found in your home, you may not realise that while removing materials by yourself, you are exposing yourself much longer and at higher amounts, in effect increasing the health risk.
Specialised equipment, just like what we use at Defence Pest and Building Inspections, is also necessary to avoid the dangers of asbestos.
Who Should Handle Asbestos Removal?
To ensure safety, only licensed handlers are allowed to remove asbestos from properties. There are also various classes of licenses required, depending on the area that is covered and type of asbestos to be removed.
If the area covered is less than 10 square metres, a licence is not required, but you need to take precautionary measures. You may want to consult with WHS to ensure that you comply with the regulations.
How Do I Know If My Home Has Asbestos
It is almost impossible to detect asbestos in your home by simply looking at ceilings, walls or floor tiles. The materials may need to be inspected and tested using the appropriate equipment. You can also have your home inspected by Defence Pest and Building Inspections, where our experts can help you determine if you have areas that require asbestos removal.