Does your commercial property contain asbestos? The use of asbestos-containing building materials (ACBM) violates federal regulations, but commercial buildings built before EPA restrictions went into place may contain this toxic material. Because asbestos doesn’t pose a health risk unless disturbed, the EPA allows for asbestos management instead of immediate abatement. However, many businesses choose commercial asbestos abatement because of the cost and labor required to comply with asbestos containment guidelines.
How to Identify Asbestos in a Commercial Building
The EPA divides asbestos-containing building materials (ACBM) into three categories:
1. Surfacing materials
Materials that have been troweled or sprayed onto surfaces. These materials include fireproofing materials, decorative plaster, and acoustical materials.
2. Thermal system insulation
Most commonly, these materials are applied to pipes, ducts, boilers, and tanks to prevent condensation, heat loss, or overheating.
ACBM that don’t fall into the other categories can include textiles, electrical and sound insulation, ceiling or floor tiles, siding, roofing materials, and cement panels.
If you suspect your commercial property has asbestos-containing materials, reach out to a specialist for proper and safe identification.
Guidelines for Commercial Property Asbestos Management
The EPA outlines the requirements for renovations, installations, and demolitions of buildings containing asbestos in The National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). For properties to maintain regular daily operations, an Asbestos Operations and Maintenance Program is necessary. This program must include:
- Appropriate training for custodial and maintenance staff.
- A program to notify tenants, employees, and other building occupants about the presence of asbestos-containing materials and how to avoid disturbing them.
- Systematic monitoring of the asbestos-containing materials with documentation of any changes.
- A system to obtain permits and properly control work that might disturb ACBMs.
- Safe work practices to prevent disturbing asbestos fibers.
- Proper record-keeping regarding asbestos and implemented safety measures.
- Medical and respiratory protection programs for workers.
For school buildings containing asbestos, the EPA has a separate, more stringent set of regulations for proper asbestos maintenance.
Do you need asbestos abatement services for a commercial Atlanta property? Contact Clean Environmental Group today.