Asbestos! The danger is all around
The danger is all around
Most of us are now well aware that breathing in just a speck of asbestos dust could eventually lead to certain lung diseases such as Asbestosis or Mesothelioma. However, the difficulty for most of us is identifying what is asbestos. The fact is, if your home or commercial premises were constructed prior to 1986 and has not been substantially renovated since, you are likely to have asbestos in your premises somewhere. When it comes to the term asbestos most people think about sheeting that is used as internal walls or for roofs. However, asbestos was used in hundreds of different products with many not well known to the general public. Asbestos products fall into two main categories. Non friable, which includes products like sheeting and roofing. Then there is friable, which is consideration the more difficult and more dangerous when it comes to dust. It includes products like loose fill insulation, pipe lagging and vermiculite ceilings. Loose fill insulation has created many headlines and in particular Canberra with the "Mr Fluffy" issue. Vermiculite ceilings and walls which can contain asbestos have also been used on a very large scale. These ceilings and walls are generally found in commercial buildings, unit blocks and dwellings constructed up until the mid eighties. It is basically a spray-on textured finish which was generally painted over, but it's also not unusual to find areas including ceilings inside a property that has not been sealed or tested. Unlike sheeting, textured finishes are soft to touch and it's very easy to dislodge particles. A property owner, a tenant moving furniture, or a cleaning contractor dusting off cobwebs could all easily potentially expose themselves to asbestos dust particles. Unfortunately vermiculite finishes aren't the only asbestos dangers found inside units and houses. Some decorative finishes used around the same period also contained asbestos. These surfaces are much less common than vermiculite and have a trowelled-on finish. While any asbestos based product poses a very high risk particularly in an enclosed area, it is important to be aware that many external renders and finishes may also contain asbestos. If planning renovations or building demolitions in the future and you are not sure, then get it tested by a qualified professional. Make sure they account for all areas of the building. CPR Insurance Services have a large panel of Asbestos Removers all over Australia if you are needing assistance with identifying and removing this potentially poisonous material from your home or commercial premises. Contact us for a referral. General Advice Warning This advice is general and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether the advice is suitable for you and your personal circumstances. Before you make any decision about whether to acquire a certain product, you should obtain and read the relevant product disclosure statement.