Asbestos awareness, What is Asbestos?, Health risks

What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a fibrous material
It occurs naturally in many parts of the world.
3 main types
Chrysotile - white asbestos
Amosite - brown asbestos
Crocidolite - blue asbestos
Health risks     
·         Asbestos fibre bundles can split with small fine fibres breaking away.
·         If inhaled the body is able to resist most of the large particles, but fine fibres, too small to see, can lodge deep in the lungs
·         This can cause these diseases:
·         Lung cancer - usually leads to death.
·         Asbestosis - affects breathing, leading to disability, and can cause death.
·         Mesothelioma - leads to death.....
Points to note
·         More than 3000 people die each year of asbestos related diseases.
·         Delay between exposure and onset of disease is approximately 15 -60 years.
·         All types of asbesos can be dangerous if inhaled.
·         Risks are increased by smoking
·         The more asbestos fibres breathed in, the greater the risk to health
·         There is no cure at present for asbestos related diseases
Asbestos products
Asbestos cement
 sheets - flat or corrugated
 used as: roofing, walls, ceilings
                                                panels/partitioning, bath
                                                panels, under stairs, door-
                                                linings, cladding   to ducts
 flues - from boilers / water heaters
 rainwater pipes / guttering
 water storage tanks
 decorative plaster finishes (artex)
 floor tiles/ roof tiles/ car parts (brake clutch linings)
Asbestos insulating board  used as:                    
                                           ceiling panels / tiles
                                                wall panels/partitioning
                                                soffits - internal/external
                                                door linings, especially to fire doors,
                                           heating unit cupboards
                                                cladding to ducts
When is asbestos a risk to health ?
·         Consider the type of product.
·         How well is the asbestos bonded into it?
·         Is it likely to contain a small or large amount of asbestos ?
And, consider the condition;
·         Good ?  E.g. Sealed, painted.
·         Damaged ?  Extent of damage





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