Health Risks of Asbestos

Due to the health risks associated with asbestos being used in construction materials, Australia banned their use in 2003 and many other countries have taken similar actions either before or since. Asbestos presents a health risk when the material which contains it, starts to break up and release the asbestos fibers into the atmosphere. These fibers are easily inhaled and when they are, they remain in the lungs, unable to be removed. The build-up of these fibers in the lungs can lead to mesothelioma or cancer but this was not discovered until asbestos had been in use in the construction industry for nearly 200 years.

From the 1800s up until the 1990s and in some cases even later, asbestos was commonly used in construction materials to make them more insular against heat and sound. The use of asbestos in this manner did not make the construction materials more flammable and in some cases even made them less flammable and so they were a popular additive to many construction materials including cement, paints and tiles.

This means that if you live in or work in a building that was built prior to, in the case of Australia, 2003, there is the possibility that you may be prone to a potential asbestos health risk if the building starts to break up in any way. The health risks can include mesothelioma and cancer which in either case, could lead to death. Obviously if one of these older buildings is demolished, the asbestos fibers are still released into the atmosphere presenting a health risk to anyone in the immediate area.

This has led to asbestos removals Sydney and the removals are made by specialist companies who are fully trained in all the safety aspects of detecting and handling asbestos in a manner that renders it safe. These same companies can do tests for asbestos, remove it and also safely dispose of it in a way that is compliant with regulations for the safe disposal of such materials.

There are several different types of asbestos that can be found in buildings and although only some of them were actually intended to be an additive to materials, the others are often present as contaminants. As each of the different types of asbestos has different properties and therefore needs to be handled and disposed of differently, the removal of asbestos is not something that can be undertaken as part of a DIY project but rather, has to be completed by professionals especially trained and knowledgeable about the different types of asbestos and the unique risks associated with each of them.

These specialist companies are now being called on for advice by contractors that have been tasked with the demolition of older buildings which, until recently, were being demolished without any consideration for the health hazard such a demolishment could induce. These specialist companies are located in Sydney and all across Australia as well as in other countries around the world and they are all getting busier.

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