So you have found some materials that you think could contain asbestos. What should you do now?
Follow these steps to ensure that you will not put yourself or others at risk of harm.
- Stop working!
- Don’t damage the material
- Check for asbestos on you
- Keep others out of the area
- Put up a sign
- Report the issue
It may sound obvious but finishing your current task is not an option. Stop work immediately and put your health and the health of others first.
Don’t damage the material
Asbestos materials that are undamaged are not cause for alarm. When asbestos materials are damaged the resultant fibres can get into your lungs and cause cancer and other lung diseases. For the materials to be dangerous you need to have inhaled some of the fibres – no dust and no fibres means no problem. Of course you will still want to have the materials dealt with; either by removing them or coating them with a non-asbestos product.
Check for asbestos on you
If you have dust or materials on you that you think contain asbestos the first thing to do is to call for help. You can wipe the dust off your clothes with a damp cloth and you should put on your respiratory or personal protection equipment. If you have asbestos materials in your hair or shoes then you will need want to shower as well.
Make sure your dispose of your clothes and rags properly. Most importantly seek help and don’t try and deal with it on your own.
Keep others out of the area
Make sure everyone knows about the incident and stop others coming into the contaminated area.
Put up a sign
Make sure that no one else enters the area whilst you are away.
Report the issue
Find whoever is in charge and ask them to follow their own safety procedures. They should already know who to call and where the necessary equipment is to deal with the problem.
So what now?
Now that you have taken all of the steps necessary to keep you and your family safe, it is time to call in the experts. An experienced asbestos removal company will have the right tools, gear and knowledge to best repair and replace the affected areas.
If you are in a small residential home, look for a qualified builder that has the correct training to remove the asbestos correctly. If however you are in a commercial building, large residential building or apartment block then contact R.O. Steel Roofing Services. We have completed many large building asbestos removal projects in the Sydney area and can help you.