Avoiding Asbestos Health Hazards
Asbestos roof tile is basically an asbestos-contaminated roofing material. It is made up of natural minerals that are fibrous in nature. The fibrous quality of asbestos was once considered useful in various building materials. For example, it was useful in pipe insulation, floor tile, and fireproofing. Other roofing products such as shingles, tars, pitch and roof tiles were also prepared with the help of asbestos.
Dangers of Asbestos Roof Tile
Asbestos roof tiles are hazardous for health because asbestos particles released from the tiles could cause respiratory health hazards. These health hazards occur when respirable fibers are released into the air and then inhaled into your body. Materials that contain Asbestos are divided into two categories Friable (able to be reduced to a powder by hand pressure) and non-friable.
Usage of NonFriable asbestos-containing materials is not that harmful because they do not release dangerous asbestos fiber into the air. This class of materials does not release fibers unless you impact them mechanically with the help of tools, drills, and saws.
Five Protection Steps
There are five steps of protection that are helpful to prevent asbestos fiber release during removal of asbestos roof tile.
First, roofing materials must be mixed with non-friable materials (tar, pitch, asphalt). This mixing hardens the asbestos fibers, prevents their release, and avoids inhalation.
Second, use only approved safe methods of asbestos removal wherein only hand tools like shovels and hammers are used to strip the roofing material from the building.
Third, asbestos should be made wet before disturbing it.
Fourth, it is vital to know the proper way to handle the asbestos materials during and after removal.
Fifth, workers removing the roofing materials should be trained and certified in accordance with an EPA recognized training program.
Regulations for Asbestos Roof Tile Removal
According to OSHA regulations, all persons working with asbestos-containing materials should wear respiratory and other personal protection equipment during the removal process. There are different state and even federal regulations that regulate the removal of asbestos roof tiles and other asbestos-containing materials. Be sure to know the regulations or to hire a professional who is well-versed in asbestos abatement.