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1. 1 2. 2 By the end of the course you will be able to:- ã Identify the 3 main types of asbestos ã Identify the diseases caused by exposure to asbestos ã Understand…
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  • 1. 1
  • 2. 2 By the end of the course you will be able to:- • Identify the 3 main types of asbestos • Identify the diseases caused by exposure to asbestos • Understand the increased risk for smokers • Identify some of the likely uses and locations for asbestos products in buildings • Know how to avoid the risks from asbestos • Explain the general emergency procedures should asbestos be discovered / disturbed
  • 3. 3  ASBESTOS is a Naturally occurring material  3 main types: ◦ Chrysotile – ◦ Amosite – Brown ◦ Crocidolite – Blue ◦ You can’t identify the different types just from colour, as many Asbestos fibres are embedded in other substances  2 types of structure ◦ Serpentine – is like a coarse cotton wool, or fluffy fibreglass, water loving and most commonly used. ◦ Amphiboles – Brown and Blue long thin fibres, water hating WhiteWhite WhiteWhite
  • 4. 4  Properties: ◦ Versatile ◦ Hardwearing ◦ High tensile strength ◦ Very Good chemical, electrical and heat resistance ◦ Resistant to acids ◦ Virtually indestructible  The general use of asbestos is now banned. ◦ Blue and Brown asbestos banned in 1985 ◦ White was banned in 1999
  • 5. 5  The Ancient Greeks used asbestos for wicks in lamps (they never burnt away) – the name means inextinguishable  The Greeks did note a ‘sickness in the lungs’ of slaves who wove asbestos into cloth  The Romans used asbestos cloth napkins, which were cleaned by throwing them into the fire. ‘PPE you say… Well there’s a thong or a loin cloth, which one do you want?’
  • 6. 6  Deposits of asbestos are found throughout the world  Russia (largest producer), Canada, South Africa, China still mine it!  Asbestos is extracted by open cast mining. It is crushed, processed and refined into a wool like fibrous mass  During the 1950s – 1980s, hundreds of building products contained asbestos  Asbestos cement products were still in use until 1999  Use of asbestos products peaked in the Sixties and early Seventies
  • 7. 7  All types of asbestos are classed as carcinogens. ◦ There is no guaranteed safe exposure limit  Asbestos related diseases can take 15 – 60 years to develop following exposure to fibres  The risk of adverse effects is much higher for smokers  People with Asthma /genetic dispositions towards weaker lung conditions could be affected by much lower levels of fibres.  Occupational Asthma/ other conditions - your lungs are made permanently ultra sensitive to any dust/ fibres from past repeated exposure.  Asbestos fibres break down splitting lengthways, creating far thinner fibres each time they split
  • 8. 8  Inhalation of fibres causes the most problems ◦ The sharp micro fibres become lodged in lung tissue, can’t be removed, and these scar the lung tissue.  If swallowed asbestos can cause cancer in the bowels ◦ A damaged Old Asbestos water tank, a water shortage - who gets the last cup of water?!  Asbestos fibres cannot be absorbed through the skin, by contact, settlement of dust or by rubbing off dust with your hands  A fall on a shard of Asbestos could see fibres piercing the skin into an injury area  Asbestos fibres can irritate the eyes, could become lodged in the soft tissue of your tear ducts, etc… (wear glasses)
  • 9. 9  ASBESTOS and SMOKERS Normal lung function:  The hairs (cilia) in the throat and Trachea lift food, dust, and phlegm up from the lungs 24/7 for us.  It takes 24 hours for the hairs to move a piece of food debris back up to the throat, for us to cough it out or swallow it.  Our immune system uses white blood cells to seek out an destroy the Asbestos fibres, swallowing them and taking them away from irritated areas of our lungs.
  • 10. 10 The effects of smoking:  Smoking paralyses the tiny hairs in the throat and down into the lung structure, eventually smoke kills these hairs.  Smokers no longer have an automatic back up system to remove all the rubbish from building up in their lungs  Smokers lungs become desensitise to smoke & particles, the immune system doesn’t send as many white blood cells to clean up the mess
  • 11. 11 Pathway of Asbestos fibres through the body Fibre encapsulated at rib Outer pleural membrane Inner pleural membrane Lung cartilage Rib Path of Asbestos fibres
  • 12. 12  Main diseases are: Asbestosis Lung cancer Mesothelioma Pleural Plaques  Asbestosis ◦ Scarring of lung tissues, caused by fibres reaching the alveoli ◦ This results in permanent scarring, reduced lung capacity and increased risk of lung cancer ◦ Symptoms include extreme shortness of breath ◦ Lung function lost, is never recovered ◦ Not always fatal but extremely debilitating
  • 13. 13  Lung Cancer ◦ Cancerous tumours in lung tissue ◦ Symptoms include shortness of breath, coughing (up blood) ◦ Nearly always fatal -28% survival rate in the 1st year!  Mesothelioma ◦ Cancerous cells form on the membranes covering the internal organs. Most commonly on the pleura covering lungs, then spreading everywhere. ◦ Cancerous growth inhibits normal lung tissue function ◦ Symptoms: shortness of breath, cough, pain in chest ◦ Rapid, Very aggressive mutation and growth of cancer ◦ Always fatal – life expectancy 6 – 24 months from diagnosis
  • 14. 14  Pleural Plaques ◦ Fibres lodged in the lung tissue push through and scratch the inside of the pleural membrane. ◦ This causes inflammation and areas of scarring ◦ Restricts breathing through sharp stabbing pains on inhaling ◦ Non fatal, - but causes a lot of pain and discomfort ◦ Claiming any compensation for this is very hard  Less common disease linked with asbestos exposure include: ◦ Cancer of larynx ◦ Asbestos warts ◦ Pleural thickening
  • 15. 15 Natural exposure ◦ The Asbestos minerals are created by the intense heat and pressure of volcanic / tectonic activity. ◦ Volcanoes, Earth quakes, Landslides and Erosion have released asbestos fibres into the atmosphere since man has been around. ◦ In general our body’s are able to cope with the natural level of exposure from nature, we have evolved with this.
  • 16. 16 Asbestos is a naturally occurring substance Everyone is exposed to very small numbers of fibres all the time. Normal Background levels are 0.000001 – 0.0001 fibres/ml. That means 1 asbestos fibre or less in every 10 Litres of air One fibre is smaller than a 50th of the thickness an eyelash Fibres are so small and so light, that they can remain suspended and free floating in the air for 10 hours or more Opening a window after disturbing asbestos, The fibres will be continually agitated to remain in the air.
  • 17. 17 Asbestos Levels Natural levels This equates to approximately one asbestos fibre or less in every 10 Litres of air The equivalent of less than one fibre in a bucket! Friable: very easy to become and stay airborne Un-natural levels The Control limit for asbestos exposure is 0.1 asbestos fibres per cubic centimetre of air (0.1 f/cm3). Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 The equivalent of 1000 asbestos fibres in a bucket…
  • 18. 18 Unnatural, avoidable exposure People can only be exposed to asbestos if: ◦ The Asbestos material is disturbed or damaged ◦ Asbestos fibres are made airborne ◦ You breathe in the Asbestos fibres ◦ You ingest the Asbestos fibres  YOUR risk of ill health or death is determined by: ◦ The Concentration of fibres in the air ◦ The Duration of an exposure ◦ The Number of exposures you have ◦ The Level of respiratory protection you wear
  • 19. 19  Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA) ◦ Employers’ duties: • Have a written Health and Safety policy • Maintain safe workplace - with safe access and egress • Provide and maintain machinery and equipment, Safe Systems of Work, and PPE, to minimise risks to health • Ensure Safe use, handling storage and transportation of substances • Provide: information, instruction, training and supervision
  • 20. 20  Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Employees’ Duties: Take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and others who may be affected by their actions or omissions. Co-operate with employer to enable them to comply with their statutory requirements Do not misuse anything provided under a statutory requirement in the interests of health and safety at work
  • 21. 21  Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 ◦ Employers must: • Assess Hazards and Risks to employees and others affected by their working • Record the findings • Ensure employees are told of the risks involved in their work and the precautions required to control the risks • Review assessments regularly to ensure they remain relevant ◦ Employees must: • Follow training, & instructions, use precautions & PPE protective equipment provided.
  • 22. 22  Brings together 3 previous sets of legislation:  Prohibition and the Control of asbestos at work and licensed asbestos Working  Bans the use of White, Brown and Blue asbestos + the second hand use of asbestos products (e.g. asbestos cement sheets)  To increase employer and employee awareness to the presence of asbestos + the risks from work with asbestos  Requires duty holders to manage asbestos properly in non domestic properties: ◦ Asbestos management plan ◦ Asbestos register for building
  • 23. 23  Regulation 10 requires employers to provide:  Information, instruction and training to all employees likely to be exposed to asbestos, Not just asbestos removal workers  3 levels of training:  Asbestos awareness – the course you are undertaking now  Non licensed asbestos removal  Licensed asbestos removal  Asbestos Awareness training is listed in the HSE Approved Code of Practice.
  • 24. 24  Introduces stringent standards of worker protection: Where work is carried out which may disturb asbestos employers are required to prevent exposure and spread of asbestos Worker exposure must not exceed the Control Limit of 0.1 fibres per cm3 RPE must be worn, but the work must still be arranged to prevent the release of fibres.  See Approved Codes of Practice and HSE Guidance: ◦ Tell us how to put the law into practice ◦ Management of asbestos in non domestic premises – L127 * ◦ Work with materials containing asbestos – L143 * ◦ Asbestos Essentials – HSG210 * ◦ Asbestos Kills: Protect Yourself – INDG419* * All available on the HSE UPDATED Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012
  • 25. 25 Employees likely to be exposed to asbestos include: • General maintenance staff • Electricians • Plumbers • Gas Fitters • Lift engineers • Painters and Decorators • Joiners • Plasterers • Shop fitters • Architects, building surveyors • Demolition Workers • Construction Workers • Roofers • Heating and Ventilation Engineers • Telecommunications Engineers • Fire and Burglar Alarm Installers • Computer Installers
  • 26. 26  Insulating Board ◦ Structural fire protection – on steel work, behind radiators and boilers, inside doors ◦ Also used for acoustic insulation, lining, ceiling tiles, general building board (resists moisture ingress) ◦ Up to 85% asbestos, semi compressed so very likely to give ◦ off fibres if broken, drilled or sawn ◦ Only to be removed by a licensed contractor
  • 27. 27  Lagging ◦ Thermal insulation for pipes/boilers ◦ Common lagging up to 15% asbestos ◦ Quilts/blankets up to 100% asbestos ◦ Often has protective foil, paper or wire covering ◦ Only to be removed by a licensed contractor
  • 28. 28  Asbestos Cement Products ◦ Roof sheets, flue pipes, guttering, down comers, roof tiles, permanent shuttering ◦ Only 10-15% asbestos (usually white asbestos) ◦ Fibres are tightly bound with Portland cement so unlikely to give off fibres unless badly damaged ◦ Sheets should be removed whole and kept wet
  • 29. 29  Asbestos Containing Plastics ◦ Floor tiles, stair nosing’s, sink pads, toilet seats and cisterns ◦ Can also find asbestos in the adhesive used with floor tiles ◦ Up to 25% asbestos ◦ Fibre release unlikely under normal use
  • 30. 30  Asbestos Rope and Cloth ◦ Fire blankets, gaskets, cable insulation, flash guards ◦ Up to 100% asbestos ◦ Release of fibres depends on material ◦ All 3 types of asbestos used pre 1970 ◦ only Chrysotile (White) since 1970 to 1999
  • 31. 31
  • 32. 32  Sprayed Coatings ◦ Used as fire protection and acoustic control for structural steelwork. ◦ Up to 85% asbestos ◦ Fibre is very friable easy to release if disturbed. It Can also degrade as it ages.
  • 33. 33  Textured Coatings ◦ Commonly referred to as ‘Artex’. ◦ Low percentage of asbestos ◦ Fibres may be released if the material is drilled or sanded.
  • 34. 34  Asbestos Paper Products ◦ Backing on fibre boards, floor tiles ◦ Covering on electrical equipment insulation, pipe insulation ◦ Damp proof course  External Building Panels ◦ Asbestos boarding can be used for external cladding
  • 35. 35 Lift brakes Asbestos gasket Asbestos water tanks Asbestos Paper Lining
  • 36. 36 HVAC/ PLANTROOMS/ BMS Old dust on pipes could be settled Asbestos fibres!!!
  • 37. 37 HVAC/ PLANTROOMS/ BMS Vibration through large systems can keep fibres in the air permanently
  • 38. 38  Personal Protective Equipment ◦ Asbestos removal operatives wear: • Disposable overalls (Type 5 – Particle tight) • Boots without laces, or boot covers • Respiratory Protection  3 types of Respiratory Protective Equipment • Disposable respirators – with FFP3 filter • Half Face Masks • Full Face Masks
  • 39. 39 PPE and RPE  Sealed Fitting of RPE to face Face masks need to fit snug to skin to seal • Facial hair impacts the seal (Vaseline) • Significant Facial scars impact the seal • Replace old masks/ Disposable masks regularly • Replace Damaged masks • Replace filters regularly • Any old mask, tea cloth, or hanky will not do!
  • 40. 40
  • 41. 41  Major refurbishment works must not start without a type 3 (fully intrusive) survey to determine the presence of asbestos  Any asbestos in the work area should be removed/ protected or avoid contact/ impacting  Premises should have Asbestos Registers – look at them or ask the foreman where the asbestos is before starting work  If you are working somewhere where asbestos may be discovered e.g. - pulling down ceilings, working in loft spaces, under floors or demolishing walls – Hidden asbestos Wear disposable overalls and a FFP3 mask and eye protection as a precaution.
  • 42. 42 Example ASBESTOS REGISTER Where Product How much? Surface coating Condition How easy is access? Asbestos type Comment Material score Priority score Outside Roof to garage Asbestos cement Whole roof None Fairly good Difficult White? No sample 1 1 Down-pipes to garage Asbestos cement 4 x 4 metres None One broken Medium Don’t know presumed No sample 5 6.2 Inside Plant room rear wall Board panels 43 sq metres Emulsion paint Good Easy Presumed No sample 1 1 Plant room to old boiler Pipe - insulation 15 metres Gloss paint Cracked Medium Brown Bit that fell off analysed ref G02 8 12 B Site B8 Store Shed 2m Sq Emulsion paint Good Difficult Chrysotile Ref 2 (D14) 1 1 Briefing Facility 001 board in closet 1m sq Emulsion paint Cracked Difficult Chrysotile Ref 2 (D14) 2 3 Bldg C60 Depot Transport Board in wall 4m sq Gloss paint Broken Easy Amosite (Brown) Ref 7 (PFS) 12 12 C24 Depot Workshop Board on wall 6m sq Emulsion paint Cracked Easy Amosite (Brown) WG 7B 8 12
  • 43. 43  If Your work places you near Asbestos:  Wear appropriate PPE  Do a Risk Assessment, decide the best way forward  Take pictures before you do anything  Consider other precautions/ barriers/ shielding  If you can do your work without impacting the asbestos, keep aware for possible hidden risks  Double bag any waste/ old materials, e.g. old boilers  Take pictures of the job when you are finished  Always Mail/ send the pictures to your manager Working near known Asbestos
  • 44. 44 Aids to help combat Asbestos exposure Wet down suspected items, an atomiser spray will pull all forms of fibre to the ground with the water vapour PVA glue will seal all forms of fibre/dust under the surface of the glue. (Don’t dry brush dust off, wet down with spray and paint glue over this) Paint/ Varnish, will seal all forms of fibre/dust under the surface of the Paint/ varnish. (don’t dry brush, apply liberally over)
  • 45. 45 Myths  Myth 1: Cross head screws used to secure an item, means that there is little likelihood of Asbestos being present.  Truth 1: There is no way of knowing if Asbestos is present by the type of screw head used. Who knows if these were replaced and the Asbestos left in place too?  Myth 2: If you break it up out in the open air you are safer.  Truth 2: It is not safe, wind direction changes, and you would have just created secondary exposure to others down wind of you!  Myth 3: If I wet down my clothes and wash them, the clothes will be fine to use again. (moderate to large exposure)  Truth 3: Not True, the asbestos fibres are so fine, the could nestle in the weave of your clothing and resurface when dry.  Myth 4:  Truth 4:
  • 46. 46  If you discover or disturb asbestos ◦ STOP work immediately ◦ Prevent access to the area ◦ Report your manager/ supervisor. ◦ Minimise spread of contamination to other areas ◦ Keep exposures as low as you can ◦ Clean up of contamination – specialist works ◦ Change and Double Bag up any clothes/ overalls where Asbestos has been released ◦ READ HSE Asbestos Essentials Sheet EM1 gives directions
  • 47. 47 Secondary exposure  Do your kids cuddle you, as you come in from work?  Do you go the café for food during the day?  Do you slap off the dust to your clothes /overalls out side the customers house?  Do you dump the work clothes by the washing machine to be washed?  Do you walk through the customers house as you are?
  • 48. 48 Working around known ASBESTOS Never undertake work which will impact stable ASBESTOS  If you are unable to work without coming into contact with ASBESTOS, PPE + redo your Risk Assessment first!  If you have a Risk of Breaking, Brushing, Scratching, Crushing, Drilling ASBESTOS, then you should Reconsider your PPE requirements  Then decide if it is possible to protect/ cover/ seal the ASBESTOS product before ANY works begins  If it is not possible for you to undertake your work without Cutting/ Drilling/ Breaking/ Scraping the ASBESTOS – STOP and consult your line manager.  Never impact stable ASBESTOS products
  • 49. 49 Procedure if exposed to Asbestos Stop Work  Don’t attempt to sweep/ clean the area  Seal off the Area  Remove overalls/ clothing/ boots  Double Bag and Seal all clothing+ boots from others  Report it immediately to your manager  Change into clean overalls  Wait for Manager to attend site/ or give advice  Report your exposure to your GP (to record event)  Clean up specialist to site/ removal team  4 stage Testing performed at site for all clear  RIDDOR reporting process  Revisit to S&B Risk assessments/ training and reporting
  • 50. 50 HEALTH SURVIELLANCE  Your GP will record the event details  For a major exposure: X-ray Scans for lungs and airway, - long term Lung capacity test (Spirometry) – short term
  • 51. 51 Asbestos Signage Asbestos suspect Items may not contain these signs!
  • 52. 52 Other substances irritating to airways MDF is a wood composite material, primarily softwood, bonded with a synthetic resin, which is usually formaldehyde-based. Although it has been commercially available since the 1960s, its use has become significant only in the last 2 decades. MDF is currently being reviewed for it Carcinogenic cancer producing properties. The wood content or the resins/ bonding agents have a potential to cause work induced hyper sensitivity of the a
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