Asbestos Sheeting: Keep It or Remove It?
In Geelong and other places in Victoria, you can still find old houses with asbestos. Asbestos was a common material used in buildings back before 1990. Up until now, buildings built before 1990 are most likely to have asbestos products in them. Asbestos sheeting is the most popular form of asbestos product found in buildings.
Asbestos sheeting is not 100% consists of asbestos. It is actually a mixture of cement material and asbestos. The composition consists less than 20% of asbestos. Most of the composition goes to the cement material. It is used to clad timber-framed buildings. Although the use of asbestos sheeting is popular because of numerous advantages, but it also comes with great disadvantages.
- Fire resistant
- Water resistant
- Water resistant
- Helped with soundproofing
- The main disadvantage of asbestos is that it causes severe lung diseases including asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. These diseases are dangerous because there’s still no specific cure to heal them. Broken asbestos sheeting can easily generate fibre dust. Thus, you can get these diseases by inhaling the fibre dust of a damaged asbestos product.
Learn more about asbestos sheeting’s condition. It is important so you can prevent yourself from getting exposed to the asbestos dust. So, which condition of asbestos is dangerous for your health?
- Good condition: Asbestos materials that are in good condition will never release asbestos dust. However, to maintain such condition for a long time is almost impossible. Asbestos can also be damaged or weathered after long time usage.
- Damaged or Cracked Asbestos Sheeting: Once the asbestos sheeting is broken, it can release asbestos dust and makes the fibres go airborne. Although the material is not 100% asbestos, asbestos is bound into the cement. It will be easy for you to inhale the asbestos dust when you’re near broken asbestos sheeting. The more you are getting further from cracked asbestos, the more you reduce the health risk. There is a way to reduce asbestos dust from getting airborne. You can try to paint or seal the broken product. This can help to stop the broken edges from releasing more asbestos dust into the air. Asbestos fibres can continue to be bound in the cement.
- Weathered Roofs: Over time, asbestos roofing will eventually get weathered. It is natural because of the long term weather exposure. The cement will be crumbling down and asbestos dust will be easily released into the air. The best way to prevent yourself from getting exposed to asbestos dust is by removing the product.
However, the chance of getting exposed to asbestos is higher during the removal process. Thus, you must perform the removal of the material safely. Professional asbestos removal services are highly recommended by the government to finish the asbestos problems. There are also fines and criminal charges for those who handle the product carelessly.
Not only the removal process, the disposal process must also be conducted in a proper manner. You must wrap the asbestos waste in sealed bags before you can dump it in the legal landfill. No, you can’t put asbestos waste in your regular garbage bin. Handling the harmful waste is also dangerous. Thus, the government has a strict policy to handle it in the safest manner.
In Victoria, there are 2 kinds of landfill that can accept asbestos waste:
- Commercial Landfill: This landfill can only accept asbestos waste from a commercial or industrial property. You have to get permission to deliver such waste to the landfill. The transportation of hazardous waste has to be done using a permitted vehicle. The landfill accepts large and small quantities of asbestos waste.
- Commercial and Domestic Landfill: This landfill can accept both commercial and domestic asbestos waste.
Don’t be hasty when it comes to safety! Remove asbestos sheeting from your place before it’s too late. Instead of saving your budget on DIY kits and procedures, try to save more by avoiding fines and criminal charges. You must put your safety as your highest priority, always!
- You can follow the link below to contact the available legal landfill near your place:: http://www.epa.vic.gov.au/your-environment/waste/landfills-that-accept-asbestos-in-victoria
- Click the link below to learn how to package the product in the right way: http://www.asbestos.vic.gov.au/in-the-home/find-manage-remove-dispose/homeowner-removal
- Learn more: http://www.deir.qld.gov.au/asbestos/resources/pdfs/asbestos-damaged-cement-sheeting.pdf