Asbestos is one of the many dangerous hazards that a roofer can encounter on the jobsite. It should not be underestimated as it can lead to severe health issues, such as lung cancer and mesothelioma. Unfortunately, due to its many applications, asbestos made its way into roofing materials throughout the early 20th century.
In part one of this two-part article, we discussed the essential equipment needed for a roofer to work with asbestos. Now, a roofing lawyer will outline the proper practices for picking up and clearing areas of asbestos.
Use Wet Rags and Mops
Regular sweeping and dusting should be avoided because these actions can lead to asbestos becoming airborne. Therefore, the goal is to collect asbestos without drastically disturbing it. Asbestos should be picked up with the use of wet rags and mops. Be sure to dispose of any of these cleaning materials before they can dry and potentially release asbestos fibers into the air.
Use HEPA vacuums
High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) vacuums will sometimes be a more efficient method for collecting asbestos than wet cleaning. However, caution should be used when emptying these vacuums. Protective wear and leak-proof containers should be used when emptying HEPA vacuums. Regular vacuums should be avoided as their filters are not sufficient to collect asbestos fibers, which could then become airborne.
Cleaning and Removing Carpets
If asbestos-containing materials or fibers have fallen to a carpeted area, the carpets can be HEPA vacuumed and steam cleaned. However, it may be preferable to have the carpet removed altogether rather than risk contamination or pay for a costly cleanup. Any cleaning attempted should be done with as few people around as possible and with the safety equipment and methods previously detailed.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.