Nearly every building material has historically contained asbestos. Asbestos was used in over 3000 building products. Most asbestos building material types are friable or have become so with deterioration due to age, weathering or wear and tear. A list of suspect asbestos containing materials can be found in Asbestos Survey Guidance (PDF).
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An asbestos survey is performed by an AHERA Building Inspector. An AHERA inspector can be located in the Yellow pages under “Asbestos”. A single-family resident homeowner can perform an asbestos survey for their renovation project, but not for the demolition of their residence.
Material that can be crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder by hand pressure or by the forces expected to act upon the material in the course of the demolition or disposal. Such material includes, but is not limited to, thermal system insulation, surfacing material, sheet-vinyl flooring with paper-like backing, and cement asbestos products.
Material that is not friable. This may include asbestos asphaltic roofing, vinyl asbestos tile, mastic, and caulking, depending upon their condition.
Only a few types of asbestos materials were banned: sprayed-on fireproofing, pipe insulation, and boiler insulation. Even then, existing inventories of asbestos containing materials could be used until they were gone. This is one reason why there is no set construction date which can be relied upon to determine that a building does not contain asbestos. Even some newly-manufactured building materials imported into the country have been found to contain asbestos.
Materials that contain asbestos must be taken to a disposal facility authorized to accept asbestos waste. View a list of these facilities within our jurisdiction.
After properly saturating or coating the item with water, carefully wrap the items to ensure they are in a leak tight container(s). Call the waste disposal site authorized to accept your asbestos waste for specific instructions. If plastic is used, it must be a minimum of 6-mil in thickness. A “burrito style” wrapping is often used. Be sure to seal all ends with duct tape and attach asbestos warning labels and other required markings.
Yes, advance notification is required on any structure with a roof area greater than 120 square feet. You must wait 10 days after submitting your notification to the Agency, unless you file for an emergency demolition.
If the roof area of the building was 120 square feet or less, no notification was needed. However, you must follow all other rules for handling and disposing of asbestos.
If the roof area was greater than 120 square feet, a notice was required even if no asbestos is present. The Agency will not accept a demolition notification after the demolition has occurred. You may receive a Notice of Violation from our Agency for failure to notify. Before further disturbing the debris, you must determine whether it contains asbestos material. Obtain the services of an AHERA Building Inspector (look in the yellow pages under “Asbestos”) to survey the demolition debris for the presence of asbestos.
It must be handled and disposed of in accordance with our asbestos regulations. Depending on the quantities involved, you may need to file an asbestos notification with our Agency. You may receive a Notice of Violation for not removing the friable asbestos containing waste material (ACWM) before conducting the demolition.
Our agency allows non-friable asbestos-containing roofing material to be left in place if the material remains non-friable during the demolition. Other government regulatory agencies, such as the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, may have different requirements.
You should not disturb any debris and immediately notify your property owner or landlord. Ask whether the ceiling material contains asbestos or whether it was ever tested for the presence of asbestos. If the crumbling popcorn ceiling material contains asbestos, we suggest that a certified asbestos abatement contractor remove, repair, or encapsulate the ceiling.
If low pressure is used without abrasives and the siding will not be disturbed, then pressure washing is allowable. If the washing abrades the surface, breaks, or otherwise disturbs the siding, then the project becomes subject to the asbestos regulatory requirements.
Information about vermiculite can be obtained at the EPA website.
You should consider obtaining the services of an asbestos professional (industrial hygienist or consultant) to assist you in determining the extent of any possible asbestos contamination and to work with you to develop a corrective action plan to address any potential hazard.
When filing online and your payment has been approved, you will be able to print your notification. If you come into the agency office to pay with cash and use a hard copy notification form, we will make a photocopy for you. Always keep copies of the notification along with the asbestos survey on site during the project.
Complete an Asbestos Waste Material Shipment Record (PDF) and keep it with you when transporting ACM to a disposal site authorized to accept asbestos waste. A list of asbestos waste disposal sites can also be found on our website.
Yes, on the completion date you specify on the submitted notification. The completion date must be commensurate with the amount of work being performed.
Yes, you can submit an emergency notification for a fee of $40 to waive the required 10-day waiting period. Single-family residences are exempt from the $40 emergency fee.
A notification submitted to the agency online or completed in our office on an approved notification form that provides the information requested and is accompanied with the appropriate fee by credit or debit card, or cash. No checks are accepted.
No. Please remember that asbestos-containing waste material must be deposited at a waste disposal site authorized to accept such waste within 10 days of removal.
The Agency can assess a monetary civil penalty up to $18,388.00 per day per violation. If an economic benefit is realized by non-compliance, the penalty can reflect this estimated cost which is often non negotiable. Criminal sanctions may occur for a knowing or willful violation.
To satisfy the requirement for a written report under the asbestos survey requirements, a written statement by the property owner identifying which suspect materials are presumed to be asbestos containing would suffice. Remember to post this written statement at the work site or communicate to all persons who may come into contact with the material.
Friable asbestos need not be removed prior to a demolition or renovation, if the property owner demonstrates to the Agency that it is not accessible because of hazardous conditions. The property owner must submit a written determination of the hazard to the Agency by an authorized government official or a licensed structural engineer, and must also submit procedures that will be followed for controlling asbestos emissions during the demolition or renovation and disposal of the asbestos. Work cannot proceed without an approval from the Agency.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) administers the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP). All asbestos samples collected in schools for AHERA-related purposes must be analyzed only by a NVLAP-accredited laboratory. The use of NVLAP-accredited laboratories for the analysis of samples collected in private homes and other non-school buildings is not required by current Agency or federal regulation, but is nevertheless strongly recommended to ensure dependable quality results.
Yes, see definition of friable asbestos containing material. Regardless of the condition of cement products containing asbestos, cement products are regulated material and must be handled and disposed of as asbestos containing material.
No. Pipe bursting is not allowed for friable ACM (see definition of friable asbestos containing material which includes cement products) because the process of pipe bursting damages asbestos containing materials not allowing the required work practice and disposal requirements to be followed.
Watch the following video to learn more about how to file an asbestos project notification:
Watch the following video to learn more about asbestos survey requirements: