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Asbestos roofs: the invisible danger!

Did you know that asbestos still poses a significant health hazard despite of the ban on 2003? The fact is, brown and blue asbestos, which are considered as the most dangerous form of asbestos, are still exist in the roofs of numerous residential and commercial buildings in Australia. Back in the 1950s until the 1970s, these two materials were pumped into the roof cavities of more than thousands of buildings as insulation material.

We strive to prove that good contractors aren’t hard to find. Asbestos Watch will connect you with A-class licensed contractors who provide extensive asbestos roof removal services throughout Australia. They are able to eliminate fibrous roofing products completely from all types of buildings including industrial, residential, and government buildings.

asbestos-roof-removal

Our endorsed members will handle the removal, decontamination, and disposal of hazardous waste safely in accordance with the latest national and state regulations. You don’t need to worry anymore; the solution for your asbestos roofing problem is just a phone call away! When contacting one or more contractors through us, you just need to sit back knowing that the contaminated roofs will be removed completely from your property.

Table of Contents
Section 1: Tips to avoid health hazards

Section 2: Take action now with the right expert

Section 3: Excellent asbestos roof removal services

Section 4: The ultimate solution for your contaminated roofs

Section 1: Tips to avoid health hazards

Asbestos refers to a group of naturally-occurring silicate minerals, including: amosite (brown fibre), crocidolite (blue fibre), and chrysotile (white fibre). During the 20th century, fibrous roofing products were the preferred material when people needed to roof their houses. This was due the physical property of such roofing materials, which possessed high durability, came at a cheaper price and were far much lighter than slate.

Unfortunately, when the fibrous roofs aged, they would decrease in their imperviousness to water, making moss growth quite common. Also, such materials would become very brittle and break up during winter when temperatures dropped, once they started absorbing water.

If you are an occupant of a building that was put up between the beginnings of the 20th century up till 1984, you might be a potential victim of this hazardous material. – Australian government

The most shocking part about fibrous roofs today is the fact that they still exist in more than 10.000 commercial, residential, and government buildings throughout Australia. Here are three important tips to help you managing contaminated roofs safely:

More about asbestos management plan.

Tips #1: Learn about asbestos

Learning about ACM can take you huge steps in protecting yourself and the surrounding environments. There are many ways to get ACM-related information; such as from newspaper articles, television, and local authority’s website.

For more information about ACM and regulations surrounding it, you can access these following government websites:

  1. Victoria : www.asbestos.vic.gov.au
  2. NSW: www.safework.nsw.gov.au/health-and-safety/safety-topics-a-z/asbestos
  3. WA: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/worksafe/asbestos-frequently-asked-questions
  4. SA: www.asbestos.sa.gov.au/home.html
  5. Queensland: www.deir.qld.gov.au/asbestos/

Tips #2: Identifying asbestos roofs

One of the most widely used fibrous roofing products in the past is supersix, which was manufactured and sold by James Hardie. Nowadays, supersix was already replaced with hardifence that is safer and ACM-free. Instead of using asbestos as the mixing material, hardifence is made of cellulose fibre. It is quite difficult to tell whether your roof is made of super six or hardifence since these two products look quite similar.

If you are wondering how to tell the difference between supersix and hardifence roofs, here are some hints for you:

  1. Age of the house: If your house was built before the 1970s, it will be most likely to contain supersix. Hardifence was commonly used in a house built after the late 1980s.
  2. Number of ridges: Supersix was manufactured with 7 ridges, while the latest version of hardifence usually has only 5 ridges which indicates that it does not contain fibrous materials.
  3. Markings: You can also check for identifiable markings by examining the edge of the sheet. Hardifence usually has ‘manufactured without asbestos’ printed on the sheet along with the date of manufacture.
  4. Fingernail scratch test: Generally, hardifence is slightly softer than the old ACM-containing supersix. You can try to use your fingernail to scratch the surface of the sheet. If you can gouge a mark on the sheet, then it is most likely a hardifence.

However, to be completely sure, you need to contact an expert to perform a thorough identification and testing via an accredited laboratory. Since fibres are invisible to the naked eye, the only way to properly identify ACM is through microscopic examination.

tips to identify roof that contain asbestos

Tips #3: Hire the right contractor

Picking out a trustworthy contractor can be a tricky one, especially because this isn’t something that you deal with every day. However, a few basic pointers can make it clearer when it gets down to choosing that professional who will make your premises free from fibrous roofing products.

  • It is important to find a professional who is knowledgeable and highly experienced. A wealth of experience in the field should result in better practices and more knowledge in matters related to the subject.
  • Of key importance is that they should be insured since incidents may happen unexpectedly. Therefore it is of very high importance that the contractor be insured to cover any damages both on your end and theirs.
  • The removalist should be fully A-class licensed by the government and the council.
  • To run a quick check on your chosen contractor, you could check the Workcover Authority of your local city council site. A credible asbestos contractor should be mentioned there.
  • Moreover, you may want to look around and compare costs, as some asbestos contractors may be way more costly to contract than others. However, it is still imperative to remain keen on professionalism despite the need to keep costs at a reasonable level. Typically, more reputable contractors with a wealth of experience may be more costly as compared to newer businesses.
  • Your asbestos removalist should be knowledgeable on the policies surrounding ACM roof removal and disposal in your city, and Australia in general. This is why it may be important to use a professional who has been at it for several years, as they are bound to know more than someone who is starting out. Each city has its own specifications on such practice, and as that, hiring a removalist based in your city would also be ideal for this.
  • Lastly, you should also be able to obtain an asbestos clearance certificate. This can be quite valuable for future transactions such as the potential sale of your property.

“It is important to engage contractors who are licensed by your respective territory to carry out asbestos roof removal projects.” – Safe work Australia

Further reading:

  1. www.abc.net.au
  2. www.asbestossafety.gov.au

Section 2: Take action now with the right expert

So does your living or working space contain fibrous roofing products? A lot of other Australians are asking themselves the same question when they look around their own property. They can’t help wondering how they would know if their working or living space are dangerous or if they are risking their lives by living under asbestos roofs. These are questions that most Australians want to closely explore in order to make sure that are doing what is best for themselves, their families and also employees.

Our endorsed contractors can help you to answer that question. They offer professional advice on all matters concerning asbestos roof removal throughout Australia. They also make sure that the whole process is done in a manner that does not affect other structural components in your home.

Top 4 reasons to contact our A-class licensed members

  1. They are knowledgeable, experienced, professional
  2. Our endorsed members offer a comprehensive range of services
  3. Quality service at a competitive price
  4. They conduct all jobs in accordance with regulations

#1: Our approved members are knowledgeable, highly experienced, and have all the necessary tools and equipment that are needed to do the asbestos roof removal job in the best way possible. With a dedicated team of professionals driven to provide exceptional customer service, they strive to meet your needs and expectations.

#2: Whatever your asbestos roof removal needs is, you can count on our endorsed members. They provide a comprehensive range of services for the removal of damaged and deteriorated fibrous cement roofs from domestic, commercial, and industrial properties.

#3: Our endorsed contractor will carry out sampling, identification, removal and transportation of ACM waste for you at competitive prices.   They have teams of highly experienced and trained removalists who can assure you of safe roof removal services and disposal of the roofing products without posing any risk to the environment.

#4: We ensure that our endorsed members perform ACM roof removal procedures in accordance with local, state, and national standards. Once the job is finished, they will deliver a written proof indicating that they follow the required legal and environmental procedures. When required, they can also conduct a follow-up safety test, such as air monitoring, in accordance with Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022.

Section 3: Excellent asbestos roof removal services

Asbestos removal is a complex procedure and must only be performed by an expert who has specialized training to handle friable fibrous materials. An improper handling may increase the risk of fibre exposure to you and the people around you. Our endorsed contractors offer a wide range of services for a safe handling of ACM-contaminated roofs.

Service #1: A thorough identification of your roof

Our approved assessors will conduct a thorough inspection within areas that may be accessible, noting the location and condition of the ACM. Briefly, they will follow this procedure to identify contaminated roofs:

  • They always wear protective gear before handling the suspected material.
  • Sampling and testing are carried out without people present in the room.
  • They will try as much as possible not to disturb the suspected roofing material and only take the required sample for testing.
  • Eliminate any systems for air conditioning or heating to prevent further fibrous contamination in the atmosphere.
  • Put a sheet (plastic) on the floor for sampling and testing and wet the sampling fibrous material to prevent any dust and fibres from contaminating the air.
  • The sample will be carefully cut and placed in a container with a tight seal.
  • Properly dispose the sheet and clean the outer part of the sealed container with a damp towel.
  • They will label the sealed container and apply a duct tape on the area with the disturbed ACM. This will help prevent further release of dust and fibres into the air.
  • Lastly, they will send the sample to a NATA-accredited laboratory.

Service #2: Removal of the entire roof or the supporting structures containing fibrous materials

Due to the open nature of fibrous roofs, removing techniques such as HEPA filters cannot be used. Thus, our approved members may use encapsulation techniques to prevent the risk of exposure. They may apply a special polymer or binding resin to the surface of contaminated roofs by using special sprayers. Then, their team of specialist will remove the bolts and fasteners carefully to prevent breakage or cracking. Due to the fragile nature of the fibrous roofing materials, they will do the process in the safest manner possible as most of the materials are bulky and could crack on falling.

 

Service #3: Site decontamination to ensure the work area is free from ACM

Our endorsed contractors will perform site decontamination process to satisfy local and national requirements. The procedure may comprise:

  • Decontaminating the work area: For decontaminating the work area, they will collect all contaminated dust and debris in a safe manner. Furthermore, the ACM removal area will be decontaminated thoroughly paying particular attention to walls, ledges, fittings and furnishings.
  • Decontaminating tools and equipment: All tools and equipment used during the removal project will be decontaminated using either the wet or dry decontamination procedures before they are removed from the removal area.
  • Personal decontamination: Personal decontamination procedures will be followed each time the removalists leave the work area. Personal decontamination will be performed within the work area where re-contamination cannot occur.

Service #4: Disposal of ACM waste to a legal landfill site

There are various rules set by the various state councils on the disposal of toxic waste. The disposal of ACM generally takes place at a landfill site that has been approved by the relevant local authorities and should be done as soon as possible. Our approved members will contact authorities in order to determine the best sites and conditions suitable for ACM disposal. They are very familiar with these regulations and know which landfill site are licensed to receive toxic waste and can, therefore, carry out safe disposal which are also the closest option for you.

Section 4: The ultimate solution for your contaminated roofs

If you are planning to remove ACM-contaminated roof from your property, get in touch with Asbestos Watch today! We will connect you with class-A licensed contractors for your commercial, residential, and government buildings throughout Australia.

Our members are committed to deliver excellent services to remove fibrous roofing products within your premises safely in the fastest way.

They offer a wide range of asbestos roof removal services starting from a pre-identification until disposal of hazardous waste in a lawful landfill site. Our approved contractors are familiar with your territory’s legal requirements in regards to asbestos roof removal and other related services.

Getting professional contractors through us involves an easy and straightforward process. All you have to do is contact one or more of our endorsed contractors with a detailed description of your needs. They will assess the presence of contaminated roofs and determine proper actions to eliminate them.

When looking for professional contractors to perform safe asbestos roof removal procedures…look for Asbestos Watch.

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