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Asbestos Removal

Asbestos Containing Material (ACM)
Asbestos Containing Material (ACM) was used extensively in Australian buildings and structures, plant and equipment and in ships, trains and motor vehicles during the 1950s, 60s, 70 and into the early 80s and some uses including some friction materials and gaskets, were only discontinued on 31 December 2003.
As a guide, homes built from 1988 onwards should be asbestos free, while homes built before 1984 may contain significant asbestos sources.

Asbestos products found around the home
Asbestos can be loosely or firmly bound. In older homes, firmly bound asbestos may be found in the following materials:

  • Exterior fibre cement cladding (Fibro) and weather boards (pre 1984)
  • Roof tiles
  • Artificial brick cladding
  • Flexible building boards – eave linings, bathroom linings, cement tile underlay
  • All corrugated cement roofing
  • Flue pipes
  • Architectural cement pipe columns
  • Texture paint
  • Vinyl floor tiles or coverings
  • Asbestos cement water pipes
  • Mill board linings of switchboards
  • Sprayed Insulation - Acoustic walls, beams and ceilings


Asbestos Licence
Bonded asbestos Removal - for the removal of 10m2 or more of bonded asbestos can only be done by the holder of a “B” Class licence. This licence is issued to applicants who can demonstrate they are familiar with the practices and procedures for removing bonded asbestos set out in the asbestos removal code.
A person that is carrying out the removal of bonded asbestos is not required to hold a “B” class licence if the person is directly supervised by a “A” Class license holder’s competent person.

Note: Although an individual does not need to hold a “B” class licence for the removal of bonded asbestos under 10m2, this doesn’t mean that asbestos containing material is any safer to remove or the exposure to deadly airborne fibres doesn’t exist.

Friable Asbestos Removal – Currently, under the law, all friable asbestos removal can only be done by:

  • Certified asbestos removalists who hold a business certificate to perform asbestos removal work as set out in the “Code of Practise for the Safe Removal of Asbestos 2nd Edition [NOHSC:2002(2005)]
  • The removal of any friable asbestos can only be removed by a person holing an “A” class license or a current certificate to perform.


Asbestos Removal
The removal of Asbestos Containing Material can be a high risk process because there is often a significant disturbance of the asbestos containing material and thus a potential for exposure to respirable airborne asbestos fibres.
A high degree of control is therefore essential for the safe removal of Asbestos Containing Material (ACM). People within the asbestos work area need to have protection that is adequate to control the exposure risk at the same time ensuring no asbestos contamination occurs outside the asbestos work area.
The work practices and precautions that need to be adopted for the removal of Asbestos Containing Material (ACM) very considerably, depending of the type of ACM involved their condition and their location.
Due to the complexity and nature of the removal process we highly recommended that any asbestos removal is project managed by an organization that is licensed or competent in the removal of asbestos.


Types of Asbestos

Asbestos is commonly referred to by three types:
• Chrysotile (White asbestos – belonging to the serpentine group)
• Crocidolite (Blue asbestos – belonging to the amphibole type)
• Amosite (Brown or Grey Asbestos – belonging to the amphibole group)

Under law Asbestos containing material is divided into 2 types:
Bonded Asbestos containing material (bonded asbestos) contains a bonding compound reinforced with asbestos fibres.
Friable Asbestos containing material (friable asbestos) is un-bonded asbestos containing material that, when dry, is or may become crumbled, pulverised or reduced to powder by hand pressure.

Diseases associated with asbestos
Asbestos related disease is generally associated with long term exposure to asbestos in an occupational setting. Asbestos exposure has been linked to a range of diseases including:
• Pleural plaque – Thickened patches of scar tissue on the pleura (lining) of the lung
• Asbestosis – Progressive scar tissue inside the lungs that impairs breathing
• Lung cancer – can develop decades after the asbestos exposure. Smokers and people with asbestosis are most susceptible.
• Mesothelioma – A type of cancer that affected the pleura, the covering of the lung and linings of the chest wall and diaphragm. It can develop decades after the asbestos exposure.


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Asbestos Removal
Asbestos Removal
Asbestos Removal

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