Safe Asbestos Abatement Prevemts Future Mesothelioma

By: Sally Clapper

Asbestos is a highly insulating mineral that was once used heavily in the past in many construction products and industries. It was not until later years that it was discovered that asbestos was carcinogenic. Workers and people exposed to asbestos began developing asbestos related diseases, the most serious being mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a cancer that forms in the protective lining surrounding the heart, lung and abdomen. The only known cause for mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos.
Once the dangers were accepted, legislation (Laws) was enacted to regulate the use, handling, removal and disposal of asbestos. The following federal agencies are now involved in regulating schools, public buildings and construction sites:
* EPA: Environmental Protection Agency.
* OSHA: Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
* FDA: Food and Drug Administration.
* U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA).
* U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Asbestos laws were created and are imposed by not only federal but also local and state and agencies. All legislation was initiated to avoid the harmful effects of exposure to the dangerous substance. Although asbestos removal laws may slightly vary within states, all require that asbestos removal be performed by trained abatement professionals. Almost all states require inspection prior to beginning any work as a first step.
When asbestos is found prior or during construction, homeowners and builders have three options: leave it as is, repair if damaged, or remove.
Asbestos, if in good condition and not airborne, does not pose a health hazard. If intact and sealed, experts recommend leaving it alone. On the other hand, repair or removal will be necessary if asbestos containing materials are found in deteriorated condition.
Asbestos is more likely to be disturbed or damaged and become airborne in some way during repairs, renovations or demolition. Check with local, state and federal guidelines to see what regulations must be followed to ensure safety. During construction, some form of repair or removal of asbestos containing materials is often needed. Sealing or covering up damaged materials are recommended repair methods. In the case of removal, a licensed expert who has been trained in the removal and disposal of asbestos will be needed.
In some situations, a plumbing, flooring or roofing contractor may be trained in asbestos removal and meet the requirements to perform abatement activities. Following any and all regulations regarding the proper and safe removal and disposal of asbestos will prevent anyone from facing serious criminal charges or fines. More importantly, any chance of exposure to asbestos and developing mesothelioma will be avoided and the health and safety of all will be protected.

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Sally Clapper is a representative for the mesothelioma attorneys Clapper, Patti, Schweizer & Mason, one of the leading plaintiffs' mesothelioma law firms in the nation. The firm's asbestos lawyers have been representing people with mesothelioma throughout the United States for over 25 years.

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