Asbestos Testing & Assessment Services
First of all, asbestos is a name given to a group of naturally occurring minerals that can be separated into flexible fibres. In addition, it is found in the veins of the host rock and was widely produced into commercially useful forms up until about 1980. Furthermore, the main properties of asbestos that made it so commercially successful, are its indestructibility, strength and flexibility; consequently these properties are also what makes asbestos so dangerous when inhaled.
While Asbestos was used in building materials up until mid-1980, Vermiculite was used up until the early 1990’s. Yet, thankfully, most products that contained asbestos have long since been replaced or are no longer in use.
Building materials that used asbestos include, but are not limited to:
- Building exteriors – siding and roof panels, soffits, roofing felts and mastics, stucco, brick and block mortar compounds, etc.
- Flooring – vinyl asbestos tiles, sheet vinyl flooring paper backing, and floor leveling compounds, etc.
- Ceilings – ceiling tiles, acoustic and stippled finishes, plaster, and drywall joint compounds
- Walls – plaster, drywall joint compounds, stipple finishes, and cement panels, etc.
- Service areas – mechanical insulations, duct paper, pipe insulations, and wall cavity insulations (vermiculite), etc.
- Structural – fireproofing on beams, decks, joists, and columns, etc.
- Miscellaneous – light fixture backings, fume hoods, lab counters, elevator brake shoes, fire stopping, and wire insulation, etc.
For a more complete list, please visit Alberta Infrastructure’s Technical Bulletin (issue no. 20B, Sept. 2013).
Safety Coordination Services‘ Professional asbestos testing services include:
- Bulk Material Sampling
- Laboratory Analysis
- Asbestos Building Material Inventory
- Risk Assessment
The Asbestos Testing Procedure
Sampling and analytical methodologies are also carried out using either the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Method 9002 or the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Method 600/R-93/116 using polarized light microscopy (PLM) and dispersion techniques. While vermiculite samples are analyzed in accordance with Method EPA 600/R-04/004.
Finally, based on the findings of sampling and onsite assessment during the asbestos testing process, SCS will then assist you to develop and implement appropriate and cost-effective control measures, which also include options to remove, encapsulate, enclose or manage the findings in place.
Alberta Occupational Health & Safety for the Asbestos Worker
2-Day Certification Course
In conclusion, Safety Coordination Services (SCS) is proud to continue to offer the Alberta Occupational Health & Safety for the Asbestos Worker 2-day certification course. So join us for two days of fun while we work through all the theoretical, legislative and practical knowledge your workers will need prior to working with asbestos-containing materials.
Topics covered will include:
1) Asbestos types, properties, friability, uses
2) Abatement procedures
3) Health hazards
4) Personal protective equipment, respirators
6) Sampling (air & bulk) and analysis
7) Abatement methods
8) Other hazards
Furthermore, there will be videos and practical, hands-on demonstrations with participation from the students where they will show us how to properly build a containment structure and perform a glove-bag abatement.
For more information, please contact:
Ted Letourneau, B.Sc., EP
Group Lead, Industrial Hygiene Division
Phone: (780) 485-3585