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asbestos

Suspect Asbestos-Containing Materials in Piping Insulation

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Suspect Asbestos-Containing Materials in Ceiling Tile

Asbestos Surveys

What is asbestos?

Asbestos is a mineral found naturally in the veins of rocks. When crushed, it divides into millions of microscopic fibers. These fibers have been used in insulation and fire-resistant products such as flooring and roofing materials, ceiling tiles, piping insulation, sheetrock and various insulation and fireproofing materials. Intact undisturbed asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) generally do not pose a health risk. However, they may become hazardous and pose a risk when they are disturbed or damaged, releasing harmful fibers that cause serious health problems. When these fibers are inhaled into the lungs, three major diseases may occur: Asbestosis, Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma.

How does this affect you?

Due to its known health risks, asbestos-containing materials (ACM) have largely been phased out of construction materials since the 1970s. However, buildings constructed after this phase-out have been known to contain ACMs. Therefore, an asbestos survey is recommended as part of an initial investigation of a Property and prior to any construction/demolition activities at a Property. This survey and the associated sampling is the only way for an owner or prospective owner to confirm the presence or absence of asbestos. A building is less likely to contain asbestos if it was built after 1980, however, sampling is the only way to identify the presence or absence of asbestos. Laboratory analysis determines the percentage of asbestos in the suspect ACMs. If asbestos is present, GCE works with the client in the abatement of these materials and/or in the development of an Asbestos Operations and Maintenance Program which provides guidelines for future work with respect to these materials.

How can GCE help you?

GCE performs a visual survey and initial sampling of suspect ACMs, in accordance with the federal Environmental Protection Agency-Asbestos Hazardous Emergency Response Act (EPA-AHERA) regulations and the New York State Department of Health guidelines, throughout the building and, if applicable, in areas where known construction activities are to occur. If laboratory analysis confirms the presence of asbestos, GCE works with the client in the abatement of these materials and/or in the development of an Asbestos Operations and Maintenance Program developed to provide site-specific guidelines for working in the vicinity of the confirmed ACMs.