Our professional management team always procures all notices of projects and permits that government regulators require to carry out the asbestos abatement work, legally.
Is asbestos a hazard?
Asbestos becomes a hazard by disturbing fibres, thus making them airborne. According to the OHS, asbestos only poses health risks when fibres are present in the air that people then breathe into their lungs. Dangerous fibres can be released into the air in cases where a breakdown of the asbestos-containing products occurs. Asbestos fibre release can also happen when the material is cut, disturbed or has broken down due to the age of the material.
When should you test for asbestos?
You should test for asbestos before commencing any renovation, emergency restoration and demolition. Never attempt to find or remove asbestos on your own. Skilled and trained professionals like those at GTA PROPERTY SERVICE GROUP can inspect, test and if necessary, remove any asbestos that is found in your property.
Our asbestos abatement technicians help you identify:
- If you have an asbestos problem
- The scope and severity of the problem
- The best way to eliminate or contain the problem
When is asbestos a cause for concern?
Asbestos is a concern for those involved in demolition, renovation, remediation or construction projects in buildings built before 1990. Unfortunately, many construction materials may contain asbestos. Building owners should keep records of the asbestos-containing material survey handy. If you do not have one, please contact us, and we will coordinate with our Industrial Hygienist so that they can conduct the asbestos survey with you. It is necessary to inform workers, tenants, and maintenance staff when asbestos-containing materials (ACM) are present, and work that disturbs fibres has been scheduled.
What types of activities can cause an asbestos hazard?
The following are examples of renovation or demolition activities that cause small asbestos fibres to release into the air (when the presence of ACM material has been confirmed):
- Disturbing or removing insulation (includes insulation around hot water pipes and tanks)
- Disturbing or removing roofing shingles, felt or siding
- Sanding, scraping or breaking apart vinyl asbestos floor tiles
- Breaking apart soundproof ceiling tiles
- Disturbing or sanding plaster (includes acoustical plaster)
- Sawing, drilling or smoothing rough edges of ACM containing materials
- Scraping older surface treatments, such as roofing compounds, tar paper, spackling, sealants, paint, putty, caulking or drywall
- Replacing some car parts such as brakes or transmission clutches. (Check with your parts’ supplier to see if any parts contain asbestos)
Asbestos in the Workplace
Businesses should immediately report any damage to materials containing asbestos to the Occupational Health and Safety Officer. If you suspect that asbestos is present while renovations are occurring at the workplace, contact a qualified asbestos removal specialist to dispose of the asbestos materials before continuing any work. It is important not to disturb or attempt to remove the asbestos materials yourself as this increases the risk of exposure. Do not try to control the site or disturb any more of the material unless you are trained in asbestos removal and are wearing the proper personal protective equipment.
GTA Property Service Group has a team of asbestos abatement supervisors that set up the appropriate containment chambers under negative pressure and install air scrubbing systems to control the site and keep the area off-limits while we schedule to do the additional abatement work.
The Ontario government regulates all asbestos abatement work. Asbestos abatement is separated into 3 classes:
- Installing or removing ceiling tiles covering an area of less than 7.5 square meters.
- Installing or removing other non-friable asbestos-containing materials (ACM), and the tiles/material are not being broken, cut, drilled, abraded, ground, sanded or vibrated (e.g., dust is not generated).
- Breaking, cutting, drilling, abrading, grinding, sanding or vibrating non-friable ACM if the material is wetted to control the spread of dust or fibres, and the work is done only with non-powered hand-held tools. (e.g., dust is being generated, but easy to control).
- Removing less than 1 m² of drywall in which joint-filling compounds contain asbestos.
- Removing all or part of a false ceiling to get access to a work area if the ACM is likely to be lying on the surface of the false ceiling)
- Removing or disturbing less than or equal to 1 m² of friable ACM during the repair, alteration, maintenance or demolition of all or part of machinery or equipment or a building, aircraft, locomotive, railway car, vehicle or ship.
- Enclosing friable ACM
- Applying tape, or sealant, to the pipe or boiler insulation that is ACM
- Installing or removing ceiling tiles that are ACM if the tiles cover an area of greater than or equal to 7.5 m² and are installed or removed without being broken, cut, drilled, abraded, ground, sanded or vibrated
- Breaking, cutting, drilling, abrading, grinding, sanding or vibrating non-friable ACM if the material is not wetted to control the spread of dust or fibres, and the work is done only with non-powered hand-held tools
- Removing greater than or equal to 1 m² of drywall in which the joint filling compound has ACM
- Breaking, cutting, drilling, abrading, grinding, sanding or vibrating non-friable asbestos-containing material with power tools attached to dust-collecting devices equipped with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters
- Removing insulation that is ACM from a pipe, duct, etc. using a glove bag
- Cleaning or removing filters used in air handling equipment in a building that has sprayed fireproofing that is ACM
- An operation not mentioned above and not classified as a Type 1 or Type 3 operation but may expose a worker to asbestos
- Removing or disturbing greater than 1 m² of friable ACM during the repair, alteration, maintenance or demolition of all or part of a building, aircraft, ship, vehicle, etc.
- The spray application of a sealant to friable ACM
- Cleaning or removing air handling equipment, including rigid ducting (excluding filters), in a building that has sprayed fireproofing that is ACM
- Repairing, altering or demolishing all or part of a kiln, metallurgical furnace or similar structure made in part of refractory materials that are ACMs.
- Breaking, cutting, drilling, abrading, grinding, sanding or vibrating non-friable ACM with power tools not attached to dust-collecting devices equipped with HEPA filters.
- Repairing, altering or demolishing all or part of any building in which asbestos is or was used in the manufacture of products
Adapted from: Designated Substance – Asbestos on Construction Projects and in Buildings and Repair Operations, Ontario Regulation 278/05
CONTACT US TODAY FOR ALL YOUR ASBESTOS REMOVAL NEEDS. OUR INDUSTRIAL HYGIENIST IS AVAILABLE TO INSPECT YOUR PREMISES AND PREPARE WRITTEN PROTOCOLS AND PROCEDURES FOR YOUR UNIQUE PROJECT. OUR TEAM IS READY TO REMOVE ANY AND ALL ASBESTOS-CONTAINING MATERIAL (ACM) FROM YOUR PROPERTY. WE OUR FULLY CERTIFIED AND LICENSED FOR ASBESTOS ABATEMENT AND INSURED FOR POLLUTION LIABILITY.